Is Thing a real hand or CGI in Wednesday? Here's how they filmed Thing's scenes

2 December 2022, 11:44 | Updated: 19 April 2024, 10:11

Jenna Ortega explains how her Wednesday Addams is different from the others

Sam  Prance

By Sam Prance

Thing was played by a real person in 1991's The Addams Family film but who plays him in Wednesday?

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Wednesday fans cannot get enough of Thing in the Netflix series. But did you know that the iconic hand was played but an actual real actor? Yep, it wasn't fully CGI.

Thing is an important part of every single Addams Family franchise and Netflix's Wednesday is no exception. The infamous, disembodied hand stays with Wednesday (Jenna Ortega) at Nevermore Academy and plays an integral role in helping her solve the mystery of the Hyde monster in Jericho. It also becomes manicure besties with Wednesday's roomie Enid.

READ MORE: Wednesday season 2: Release date, cast, plot, spoilers and trailers

And if you were wondering how Thing's scenes filmed, here's how the crew and actor Victor Dorobantu brought Thing to life in Wednesday.

Who plays Thing in Wednesday on Netflix?

Is Thing a real hand or CGI in Wednesday? Here's how they filmed Thing's scenes
Is Thing a real hand or CGI in Wednesday? Here's how they filmed Thing's scenes. Picture: Netflix

In the press notes for Wednesday, Netflix explain that it was very important to executive producer Tim Burton that Thing was played by a real person. While some CGI elements are used to enhance Thing's scenes, the hand is depicted by successful Romanian magician Victor Dorobantu throughout the show. This is Victor's first time ever acting on screen in a TV series.

To film his scenes, Victor had to spend "three hours preparing" and getting into a blue suit that was necessary for whenever he was on camera so that the "VFX team could visually edit him out". Victor also "often had to have his body placed in unusual places on set to get the right shot — upside down, under floors, behind walls, and even inside walls."

For certain scenes, the team behind Wednesday also used "a suitcase full of stand-in prosthetic hands cast in different positions".

READ MORE: Wednesday creators confirm Tyler's return in season 2 after shock twist ending

Describing the process to Gold Derby, production designer Mark Scruton said: "Suddenly we’re into this world, very similar to designing sets for the Muppets, where things have to be elevated, you have to have trapdoors, you have to have secret ways of getting the actor in."

Mark added: "Bits of the set had to fly off or you had to have half a desk. There’s endless permutations of bits we had to come up with. A lot of that was slightly happening on the fly because we didn’t quite know where he was going to go, so we had to have endless options."

Victor Dorobantu plays Thing in Netflix's Wednesday
Victor Dorobantu plays Thing in Netflix's Wednesday. Picture: Getty

Reacting to the behind-the-scenes photos of Victor filming Thing's scenes, fans of the series couldn't believe how it was actually done. They were also full of praise for Victor's performance.

One user wrote: "GENIUS WORK. I FELT HIM. THING HAD THEIR/HIS OWN PRESENCE, WIT & PERSONALITY. SUPERBLY DONE." Another added: "I thought this was legit cgi and prop!! Mindblown." A third person even said that Thing was "genuinely the best part of the show."

Victor describes himself as a "tattoo lover" who specialises in magic tricks involving close-up hand movements. Before he was even cast in Wednesday, he had a disembodied hand tattooed on his body. Pretty legendary if you ask me.

Read more Wednesday news here:

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