Ortega’s first horror role came with a very minor appearance in 2013’s “Insidious: Chapter 2.” Blink, and you’ll miss her. So, her switch to horror didn’t properly come until “You,” starring Penn Badgley. In Season 2, Ortega played Ellie, the younger sister to Delilah (Carmela Zumbado), and Joe Goldberg’s neighbor. Ortega once told PopSugar that she felt playing Ellie was “a good role to really be seen in a different light and change people’s perspective of me rather than just being this Disney princess.”
During the first table read of “You,” Ortega described being “nervous” and afraid she might get fired for not proving herself. “But after I did some reads with Penn, he looked at me and was like, ‘You know what? I am so charmed by you,'” she added. It was at that moment that she realized it would be a “cool” experience.
In 2020, Ortega co-starred in “The Babysitter: Killer Queen” as Phoebe, alongside Samara Weaving, Bella Thorne, and Judah Lewis, and began her turn as Brooklynn in the animated Netflix series “Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous.” Her star burned brighter than ever. On the set of “Killer Queen,” director McG predicted Ortega would become the “biggest star in the whole world,” and he most definitely was not wrong about that. In the film, Phoebe fights against a satanic cult with her co-star Lewis (as Cole), and gets a little bloody in the process. Both projects soon lead to the biggest roles of her career.