Zendaya Says She Would Love to Play a 'Villain of Sorts' in a Future Project: 'Tap Into the Evil'

"I feel like I usually play the good guy, so I’d like to play the bad guy," the "Challengers" actress said during a chat for the September issue of "Elle"

Zendaya is good with being bad.

In a cover interview for the September issue of Elle, the Challengers actress, 26, revealed that she "would love to play a villain of sorts" in a future project.

"Tap into the evil, supervillain vibes," she added during the sit-down (conducted before the SAG-AFTRA strike), noting additionally, "I feel like I usually play the good guy, so I’d like to play the bad guy."

But fans shouldn't necessarily expect a Thanos-type performance from Zendaya.

"Whatever that manifests in, I don’t think necessarily in a superhero sense, I just mean in like an emotional sense," the actress said of her villain goals.

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<p>ELLE/YouTube</p> Zendaya for <em>Elle</em>


Zendaya for Elle

Related: Zendaya Opens Up About Performing at Coachella: 'Being Onstage Is Really the Worst'

Echoing comments she previously made to British Vogue about having filmmaker dreams, Zendaya told Elle that if she wasn't an actress, she'd probably be a director.

"[Directing] is something I hope to do one day,” the Emmy winner said. “And I think outside [the industry], I feel like I would have probably followed in the footsteps of my parents and become a teacher. I love kids, I love learning and I love teaching.”

Zendaya told British Vogue in her October 2021 cover story that she was hoping to expand her career in the film industry and move into directing next.

Calling art "a huge catalyst for change," the Dune: Part Two actress said she hopes to champion diversity in Hollywood.

"If I ever do become a filmmaker, I know that the leads of my films will always be Black women," she said.

<p>ELLE Magazine/ Steven Klein</p> Zendaya on the cover of <em>Elle</em>'s September 2023 issue

ELLE Magazine/ Steven Klein

Zendaya on the cover of Elle's September 2023 issue

Related: Zendaya Is a Tennis Star Mixed in a Love Triangle in Thrilling First Trailer for 'Challengers'

Zendaya's upcoming film Challengers follows her character Tashi, a former tennis ace turned coach, who pushes her husband Art (Mike Faist), a formerly mediocre athlete, to become a Grand Slam champion.

Following Art's losing streak, Tashi spurs him on to compete for courtside supremacy in a match against his former best friend — and Tashi's former boyfriend — Patrick, played by Josh O'Connor.

In her cover story for Elle, Zendaya said that in her career, she wants "to find things that will push" her, "from a character perspective."

“As I get older, you know, I can’t play a teenager for the rest of my life," she added.

Challengers is in theaters April 26, 2024.

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