Actress, activist, singer. There's not much that Zendaya doesn't absolutely nail. At just 21 years old, she's already an inspiration, and has come a long way since she first starred in the Disney channel series Shake It Up alongside Bella Thorne in 2010. She's grateful for the start that being a part of the Disney family gave her, especially since she's graduated to blockbuster movies like Spider-Man: Homecoming, but in an interview with Glamour, she admitted that it's not always easy to be known for her Disney past.
"There’s a lot I want to do in the movie world," she told Black-Ish star Yara Shahidi. "Having a Disney past sometimes makes it difficult for people to take you seriously, so I have to pick the right projects, make sure I do the right things, take my time."
However, she doesn't regret being on the show. She explained she made the leap for the sake of diversity, and for the sake of the young Black girls who tune in to the channel every day.
"I didn’t feel like there was any other choice," she said of her decision. "I was like, 'If I’m going to do this, this is how it has to be.' There needs to be a black family on the Disney Channel. A lot of people who aren’t people of color can’t quite understand what it’s like to grow up and not see yourself in mainstream media. And you know, there is so much work left to be done."
Which is why we can't wait for what's ahead. Not only is she hoping to star in more projects, she has a lot of behind-the-scenes dreams as well.
"I want to produce and create shows and movies, whether or not I’m starring in them," she explained. "You know when you watch a show and you’re like, 'That’s so good. I wish I’d made it?' Why not? Why not make it? Wild idea, I know. "
One thing's for sure: We'll be tuning in every step of the way.