Want to Know Every Single Fact About Zendaya? Same, Let’s Go

The Editors
Photo credit: Dimitrios Kambouris - Getty Images
Photo credit: Dimitrios Kambouris - Getty Images

From Cosmopolitan

Let the record show: I’m putting my money on Zendaya’s presidential run in the year 2040. I mean, she’s already been the star of *two* Disney Channel shows, released her own music, wrote a book, and appeared in iconic movies like Spider-Man and hit TV shows like Euphoria. And she’s only 23 years old. Yep, now’s the appropriate time to pensively wonder what you’ve been doing with your life. (Sorry, friend. I’m in the same boat. It’s fine.)

Zendaya is clearly an all-around boss. But glitz and glamour aside, there’s a lot more to her that you probably don’t know. Keep on reading to learn more about this Hollywood go-getter, including her first acting gig and the time she teamed up with Selena Gomez way back in the day.

Her full name is Zendaya Maree Stoermer Coleman

Apparently, her first name is inspired by the Shona word “tendai,” which means “to give thanks.” Her dad has “a thing for Zs and zen,” hence Zendaya!

She was born on September 1, 1996

As Zendaya once said, “I’m a Virgo, and I know what I like.”

She’s a mom to a floof baby

Her black miniature schnauzer is named Noon. Noon is 4 years old. All together now, awww:

Her first acting role was in theater

According to a 2014 questionnaire in Us Weekly, she got her start as one of the witches in Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth.

She was a backup dancer for Selena Gomez

Before she became a Disney star, Zendaya appeared in a Sears commercial with *the* Selena Gomez and a few other kids who went on to be Disney stars. Talk about a squad!

She used to be super shy

In her Vogue cover story, Zendaya’s mom revealed that Zendaya was so shy that she and Zendaya’s father had to attend seminars for the parents of timid children.

She’s obsessed with ice cream

Her hidden talent is being able to bite into ice cream with her front teeth. (Btw, her favorite flavor is Häagen-Dazs’s coffee.)

She also loves Harry Potter

Zendaya told InStyle that she watches Harry Potter “like, once a day.” “It’s just calming to me, so that’s my thing,” she said.

Channing Tatum is probably her celebrity crush

Channing has been a consistent name in her lineup of celeb crushes through the years. (Can ya blame her?) She got to work with him for a day on the film Smallfoot.

Photo credit: Ethan Miller - Getty Images
Photo credit: Ethan Miller - Getty Images

Her backup career was teaching

Both of her parents are teachers, and she told Teen Vogue that if she weren’t in the entertainment ~biz~, she’d be a teacher “in a heartbeat—guaranteed!”

Her parents did everything to support her acting career

When she was in middle school, her dad quit his job to move to Los Angeles with Zendaya while her mom held down two jobs in their hometown of Oakland, California, to financially support the three of them. They really believed in her, y’all. And look where she is now!

She’s an author

Her book, Between U and Me, was released in 2013. In it, she shares life advice about pursuing your dreams, maintaining friendships, and more.

She called out Giuliana Rancic for her racist red-carpet commentary

Giuliana made the following racist remark about Zendaya on E!’s Fashion Police during the 2015 Oscars: “That hair is swallowing her. I feel like she smells like patchouli oil.” Zendaya addressed this the next day in an Instagram post, saying, “My wearing my hair in locs on an Oscar red carpet was to showcase them in a positive light, to remind people of color that our hair is good enough. To me, locs are a symbol of beauty and strength, almost like a lion’s mane.” Giuliana apologized in a Fashion Police episode later that week.

She inspired a Barbie doll

Back in 2015, Barbie modeled a doll after Zendaya’s Academy Awards look—yep, the same look Giuliana criticized. So major.

She called on Disney to put a Black family on one of its shows

After Shake It Up! came to an end, Zendaya told Disney that they needed to cast a Black family for K.C. Undercover, the show she would star in next. “I didn’t feel like there was any other choice. 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,” she told Yara Shahidi in her cover interview with Glamour in 2017.

Her idol is Oprah

Who could disagree?! In her 2017 cover interview with Glamour, she raved about the talk-show host and philanthropist: “She’s someone who, even with everything stacked against her, has soared to unbelievable heights. If she wants to create a network, she can do it. She wants to produce a movie? She can do it. But then also there’s this level of realness to her. You feel like she’s your auntie.”

She was SO close to winning Dancing With the Stars

At the time, she was the youngest contestant ever to be on the show—she was 16! Her partner was Val Chmerkovskiy, and let me say, they were absolute 🔥 on the dance floor. She lost to Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough.

She’s allegedly dating Jacob Elordi

Fans started speculating that these two Euphoria costars were dating when they were spotted on a trip to Greece in 2019. In February, Jacob was photographed kissing her head in New York. You know the vibes.

Photo credit: Splash News
Photo credit: Splash News

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