“Euphoria” actress Zendaya receives monumental win at the Emmys


Photo from Wikimedia Commons

Zendaya is the youngest actress to receive an Emmy for best lead actress in a drama series. Her show “Euphoria” received two more awards throughout the night and a total of six nominations.

Nasya Stevenson, Staff Reporter

“Still don’t really have any words…feeling so much love right now, thank you,” Zendaya tweeted and captioned a photo shared on Instagram.

On Sept. 20, the 72nd annual Emmys premiered and one 24-year-old actress made history. HBO’s “Euphoria” lead actress Zendaya won best lead actress in a drama series. Her first Emmy win was historic. She is the youngest lead drama actress and the second Black woman to win in the category. Zendaya won for her role as Rue, an unsettled teenager struggling with drug addiction. Zendaya competed with and beat nominees Jennifer Aniston, Laura Linney, Sandra Oh, Jodie Comer and Olivia Colman.

Zendaya was overcome with emotion when announced as the winner, not even prepared to make her acceptance speech. The actress was surrounded by family and friends who were overjoyed. Zendaya thanked the TV Academy and all the other women in the category. 

As she and her family soaked in the news, Zendaya began her acceptance speech. “This is pretty crazy, I don’t really cry. Wooo,” she said incredulously while clenching her gold statuette.

Teadora Tate, a JCU Black Student in Action, said “I think the fact that it “Euphoria” focused on Zendaya’s mental health was major because it’s so stigmatized in the black community. I’ve struggled with my mental health in the past so to have that representation was really meaningful.”

After thanking the cast, crew and creator, Zendaya said, “I know this feels like a really weird time to be celebrating, but I just want to say that there is hope in the young people out there … I know that our TV show doesn’t always feel like a great example of that but there is hope in the young people, and I just want to say to my peers out there doing the work in the streets, I see you, I admire you, I thank you.”    

“Euphoria” is a teen drama series created by Sam Levinson that focuses on high school students handling their experiences of drugs, sex, love, friendships, identity and trauma. It premiered on HBO in June 2019 and has been confirmed to return for a second season. 

The HBO drama series received six nominations in the Emmys this year. Along with Zendaya, two other nominations for the show won their category. Music artist Labrinth won Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics and makeup artist Doniella Davy won Outstanding Contemporary Makeup. The other three categories “Euphoria” received nominations for were Outstanding Music Composition for a Series, Outstanding Music Supervision and Outstanding Contemporary Costumes. 

The “Euphoria” crew, fellow castmates and several celebrities congratulated Zendaya on social media. Drake commented on his instagram story, “@Zendaya @euphoria it was a LOCK…congratulations.”

Praising the show after the Emmys concluded, a fan @dave__santiago tweeted, “Euphoria will never cease to amaze me. I just finished it for the third time and the last episode still shakes me to my core. That series deserved every award it received and more.”According to Indie Wire, “HBO president Casey Bloys confirmed to Deadline after the Emmys that “Euphoria” Season 2 is currently targeting a production start in early 2021.” Due to the show’s targeted production start date of early 2021, “Euphoria” will possibly be off the air for at least two years in between seasons. However, HBO has confirmed “Euphoria” will have a “special COVID-19 episode.” The first season is available to stream now on HBO max and Amazon Prime.