Zendaya Talks About Her Historic Emmy Win, And What Her Speech Meant For Her Generation

Zendaya Talks About Her Historic Emmy Win, And What Her Speech Meant For Her Generation
November 10, 2020 - 16:48 / Amanda Stanford

Notorious actress Zendaya made history during the 2020 Emmy Awards, as she was the youngest nominee to ever win a Primetime Emmy! For her role in the HBO series Euphoria, Zendaya proves she's got the acting chops and went on to share what that means to her and her generation. 

In the category for Outstanding Lead Actress for her role in HBO's hit drama Euphoria, Zendaya made history being the youngest actress to win the nomination, taking home her Primetime Emmy Award.

Reflecting on her win, Zendaya also discussed how her speech was nerve-wracking, not only because of how many people were watching her but the sense of responsibility she felt to give hope to her generation during such an uncertain time.

Zendaya reflects on Emmy win

We all know how wild of a time 2020 has been! As protests gripped the nation, a historic election, and a global pandemic, it's no wonder Zendaya felt immense pressure to give a speech she could be proud of after winning her first Primetime Emmy Award.

Zendaya attends the 2019 InStyle Awards at The Getty Center.

In a new interview with Elle magazine, Zendaya opens up about some behind the scenes details of what happened before her powerful speech, and how she felt being the youngest nominee ever to win for Outstanding Lead Actress.

"I was nervous about the possibility of having to get up and speak. So I was like, 'Okay, let me just write down a few little bullet points,'" she said to her Dune co-star, Timothée Chalamet.

"Usually I would just go up there and say what’s in my heart, but everybody was like, 'No, I think you should definitely write something down,'" she added.

She then added that the prospect of writing something down made her nervous, sharing, "I worried maybe that’s bad luck to have something prepared."

She continued on about her experience sharing, "So the day of, I just wrote a little thing down to have, just in case. And that was very helpful. I was very nervous, but I’m glad my family was there."

View this post on Instagram

'There is so much hope in young people, and when I say young people, I do mean myself – people my own age – but I also mean younger. These really young kids are so smart and have such a clear understanding and plan for how they want this world to change.' She's made the transition from Disney star to award-winning actor, is a darling of the fashion world and has become a powerful voice for an entire generation. How has Zendaya done it? Her 'Dune' co-star and close friend Timothée Chalamet finds out in ELLE's December issue, out now. To read the full interview, click LINK IN BIO. @zendaya In conversation with @tchalamet Photographer @micaiahcarter Stylist @luxurylaw Hair @kimblehaircare Make-up @officialsheiks

A post shared by ELLE UK (@elleuk) on

As for the speech itself, Zendaya said that she wanted to give people a sense of hope, especially the younger generation. 

"Well, my intention there was really just to be honest, because it feels like a very hopeless time, specifically in this country," she said.

"I know a lot of my peers feel enraged and exhausted and tired of living and growing up in a system that feels like it wasn’t built for us," she continued. "At this moment in time, it is hard to find joy and beauty in things, and I really think that is important. Right now, we as Black people need to embrace joy and not let it be taken away from us."