Zendaya Admits to Feeling a ‘Heavy Responsibility’ to Represent Black Women in Hollywood

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2020-06-25 18:50:57

Zendaya is embracing being a role model in Hollywood as a young Black woman — but she also understands that the job comes with its own pressures.

The Euphoria star, 23, was joined by Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Janelle Monáe, Helena Bonham Carter and Rose Byrne for The Hollywood Reporter’s drama actress roundtable on Wednesday, June 24. During the discussion, Zendaya opened up about representing Black women across her industry.

“I have a heavy responsibility on my shoulders, but I’m appreciative for that because with that there’s a lot of good that I can do and I know who is watching,” the Spider-Man: Far From Home actress explained. “Now, more than ever, specifically with Black Lives Matter and everything, I feel an obligation to make sure that I’m aware and putting out the right things and in line with organizers and people who are on the ground. … I’m just figuring it out as I go, trying to do the best I can.”

Zendaya noted that she doesn’t want to “limit” herself in her acting career and that she wanted the opportunity to “do the things that I want to do and play the roles that I want to play.” With that, she also revealed that she’s instructed her reps to put her up for parts that weren’t necessarily written for a mixed-race or black woman — including her starring role on Euphoria.

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