On Saturday, at the virtual Sundance Film Festival panel by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the award season contenders appeared for ‘Women Breaking Barriers: An Industry Shift’. The discussion focused on female voice with a panel that included Halle Berry for Bruised, Zendaya for Malcolm and Marie, Andra Day for The United States vs. Billie Holiday, Sia for her Music, and Robin Wright for Land.
Talking about Zendaya who joined the panel discussion from her trailer of ‘Spider Man’ set shared about what drove her to go ahead with Malcolm and Marie in the first place which was shot during the pandemic last summer. Zendaya mentioned that she aspired just like everybody else to do something creative during the lockdown and wanted to get her ‘Euphoria’ crew back to work as their work was at a halt due to pandemics. So, she asked Sam Levinson who is the creator of ‘Euphoria’ to pen down the script for her. She shared that Sam and she are very close and he would call her every day that he would write pages and the two would talk about it for hours.
The actress shared that while shooting for the movie, it almost felt like a close-knit familial thing because the crew members from ‘Euphoria’ are her family. Malcolm and Marie starred Zendaya and John David Washington as main leads and Sam Levinson directed the film in monochrome mode.
Zendaya added, "It was my first time putting my own money into something, I'm doing my own hair and makeup, everybody's doing five different jobs because it was a skeleton crew. I was bringing my own clothes and using them as set dressing. I think it's important we take care of our people." The movie was sold to Netflix and the crew also made money with it.
Listening to Zendaya’s gesture for her crew, Halle Berry said, "At 24 that she can have an idea and go get it done and get enough support behind her to get that done... I think that says so much for where we've gotten – and that's what makes me want to keep fighting, because of Zendaya at 24, a Black woman can do that. She is proof positive that things are changing."
In Variety’s Up Next, Halle Berry was asked who would she pick as ‘up next’ in Hollywood and she went on to praise Zendaya and said, "She’s going to write, direct, and go further than I did in less time.” To which the Dune star said, “Incredibly honored, She’s always been so lovely and so supportive. Whenever I’ve run into her, she’s always taken the time to stop and talk to me — and share love and words of encouragement. It means the world to me.”
Halle was asked which of Zendaya’s roles does she like and she answered, “I’ve loved her in “Malcolm & Marie.” It was so innovative. The honesty and simplicity of that work said to me the sky’s the limit for her — and she’s brave, not afraid to take chances, authentic, and wildly beautiful. But she’s not afraid not to be beautiful. I see her as an actress who will fight to be greater than her beauty. She’s not relying on it. She’s working hard as an actor, and she will take risks. I think she will surprise us along the way. And I can’t wait to see all the ways that she will surprise us and defy her beauty with her talent.”
Zendaya also added in In Variety’s Up Next interview that she would love to direct someday in the future and mentioned that when she is not in the scene, she is on the set looking and watching behind the monitors and learning stuff from the crew. “I’m trying to learn to make the things that I want to make because I have many ideas and many plans. Being a director, when I open that door, I think that’ll allow me to tell the stories that I feel aren’t as often told or I haven’t seen enough of, and I can be a part of bringing it to life and making something beautiful”, the actress added.
Talking about her latest project, Zendaya shared that she is in the final days of wrapping ‘Euphoria’, (the trailer just dropped) and explained that the second season is a challenging one and she is excited for the audience to see it. “The cast and crew have put so much into it, so we are exhausted, but we are almost at the finish line”, she added lastly. ‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’, just released and has managed to gain attention and a lot of positive responses from the critics and the audience. In the end, she said, “I think so many people are just going to have so much fun going to see ‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’, and it’s going to bring a lot of joy. Then I’ll have a little bit of time in between then, kind of figure out what else I want to do before “Dune” starts up, which I’m excited about. Hopefully, I’ll get to do some fighting. That’s what I’ve been excited to do. The first one, I was like, I want to do fight choreography. I want to kick some ass. I’m ready! You know, give me a Crysknife. Let’s get in there.”
Zendaya is growing every day from her stunning red carpet looks to her chemistry with co-star Tom Holland and now with Euphoria’s second season on its way, she has managed to grow as a human being and an actress.