Zendaya is an impressive presence and superstar in the making. She’s had quite the journey in the entertainment industry that began on the Disney channel, shifted into music, widened when she appeared on Dancing With The Stars and elevated last year when she appeared in her first big film role in Academy Award-nominated The Greatest Showman.
From an outsider’s perspective, the 21-year old beauty has done virtually everything right.
As the cover girl for the latest edition of Marie Claire, Zendaya opens up about that pressure and the differences she sees in the industry in terms of who is held to certain standards.
While she says that she loves acting, what she loves more is the platform that it has given her.
A way for her to highlight the differences she experiences in the industry she works in.
When speaking about representation and the grouping that is often done with herself, Amandla Stenberg and Yara Shahidi, she wants people to know that young black girls, and black people period, are not monoliths.
“What is important to me is knowing we are not the only black girls in the industry. We kind of have been painted as the face, and that’s not the truth. It’s important to have a conversation where we are opening the door to our peers and more black women who don’t necessarily look like us,” explains the star.
Zendaya also spoke about the differences between how her white peers are treated in the industry versus herself, which are glaring.
She feels very aware that she doesn’t really have “room to mess up” because she doesn’t want to jeopardize where she’s gotten up to this point.
The star believes that what a white 21-year-old would be forgiven for in her career is not something that Zendaya would be, as a black woman.