Never doubt how dedicated Zendaya is to her craft, even in quarantine. In a new interview with Variety, Zendaya revealed that she played a new character every day at home during the coronavirus pandemic simply because she missed acting so much — or more specifically, filming Euphoria.
Speaking to Promising Young Woman star Carey Mulligan, Zendaya explained that she was very much ready to reprise her role as Rue Bennett on Season 2 of the HBO series, but COVID-19 concerns caused production to shut down in March 2020, just two days before they were set to start shooting. "I was definitely itching to do what I love because I hadn't been able to do it for so long," she explained.
To cope with the abrupt change, Zendaya got creative by using a variety of wigs and performing for an audience of one. "I live with my assistant, who's also like a brother to me," she said. "I told him, 'I’ll do some physical activity — I think it's good for me.' I have a whole bunch of wigs, from many years of being on red carpets, and I would put on a different wig and be a different character every day, and put on this performance for him for like an hour every day."
Eventually, the Emmy winner got so desperate to work again that she spoke to Euphoria creator Sam Levinson about possibly making something in quarantine. "I had this thought of like, 'Could we just do something in my house?'" she told Mulligan. "So we started bouncing ideas around, understanding the parameters — a very small group of people doing something inside a house. Then he calls me, and he's like, 'Yo, Z, I got a good one.'"
The result was Malcolm & Marie, in which Zendaya and John David Washington play a couple who return home from his film premiere only for their relationship to be tested as revelations begin to surface. The movie was one of the first to be shot under strict COVID-19 protocols, with the cast and just a few crew members having to isolate in Carmel, California while filming. Ultimately, it served as the perfect outlet for Zendaya's lockdown-induced frustration.
"[Marie] gave me an opportunity to use these words in a way," she told GQ in a Jan. 11 interview. "I don't yell. I'm not a very argumentative person, but it's nice to just release sh*t and be able to... I guess 'emote' would be the word? To just use her as this vessel to just get sh*t out that maybe I had pent up or hadn't said." As long as there are no additional delays, Zendaya will be able to let it all out again when Euphoria resumes shooting in March.