At Just 25 years old, Zendaya is quickly marking her well-deserved place in Hollywood as an icon in the making. For Generation Z in particular, she’s an influencer of their time who is currently paving the way for many young girls and women of color.
In fact, she has already made a noteworthy decade of progress as an actress. Rising to mainstream success due to her lead role in the Disney Channel series, Shake It Up, and then solidifying her transition into adult themes with projects such as Malcolm & Marie.
Yes, it’s been one hell of a decade for Zendaya—and she doesn’t plan on letting up anytime soon. She recently sat down with British Vogue to talk about her life growing up, her relationship with her friends and family, and her future career plans.
You can read some of her interview below and make sure you check out the full feature in British Vogue here.
Zendaya on why she feels it’s important for everyone to go to therapy, especially given the current state of affairs in the world:
“I go to therapy. I mean, if anybody is able to possess the financial means to go to therapy, I would recommend they do that. I think it’s a beautiful thing. You know, there’s nothing wrong with working on yourself and dealing with those things with someone who can help you, someone who can talk to you, who’s not your mom or whatever. Who has no bias. [The pandemic brought me] the first kind of taste of sadness where you wake up and you just feel bad all day, like what the f**k is going on? What is this dark cloud that’s hovering over me and I don’t know how to get rid of it, you know?”
On her funny, but endearing relationship with her niece:
“My niece, who is two years older than me, was wearing a side-part and skinny jeans, and I was like, ‘Uh oh, you didn’t hear? Skinny jeans are cancelled. You’re out honey, you’re out. I like to think I’m the cool aunt, I had this whole situation the other day where my little niece had friends over. I’m like, ‘Do you want to hang out? Do you need a ride? But she seems to be not too embarrassed for me. Euphoria helps with that.”
Zendaya on keeping her dating life private, even down to not wanting to kiss on camera initially:
“My dad, my brothers, it’s a whole thing. Good luck to whoever wants to take that on. [I even] remember being on Shake It Up and being like, ‘I’m not gonna do this. I’m going to kiss him on the cheek because I haven’t been kissed yet so I don’t want [my first] kiss to be on camera.”
On what the ultimate goal of her career is:
“The hope is to have a career where you can be in a position, financially, to just do things you want to do because you enjoy the work and not have to worry about the other things. But I’m always like, ‘I will always need to work.’ Because if I don’t work then everything can be gone tomorrow.”
Zendaya on what she hopes her legacy will tell future generations about being Black in America, and how she’ll let that shine through her own work:
“I mean, that’s a big question. I don’t know – I don’t know what I’m going to tell them. Hopefully, they’ll be able to look at what I’ve done and my body of work and see it. Art is a huge catalyst for change. If I ever do become a film-maker, I know that the leads of my films will always be black women. I gotta hurry up and figure out how to f**king become a director, man. I’m trying, I’m learning every day, I really am.”