Zendaya, at just 26 years old, has become the first Black woman to win an Emmy Award in the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series category two times, both times earning a trophy for her performance as Rue Bennett in the hit HBO series Euphoria. The second trophy on her mantle has made her the youngest Hollywood star to win an acting honor at the Emmy Awards twice.
“My greatest wish for Euphoria was that it could help heal people,” Zendaya shared in her acceptance speech. “I just want to say thank you to everyone who has shared their story with me. I want you to know that anyone who has loved a Rue or feels like they are a Rue, I want you to know I’m so grateful for your stories, and I carry them with me, and I carry them with her.”
Along with the Outstanding Lead Actress win, Zendaya was nominated for Outstanding Drama Series as a producer on Euphoria. Though Succession ended up taking home the coveted prize, a win for the young actress would have crowned her the youngest Emmy Award-winning producer in the show’s history.
She also picked up two nominations for Outstanding Original Music for two Euphoria songs, “Elliot’s Song” with Dominic Fike and “I’m Tired” with Labrinth, with Cinco Paul taking home the prize for “Corn Puddin'” from the Apple TV+ series Schmigadoon!
Zendaya previously made history at the 2020 Emmys when she became the youngest woman — and only the second Black woman (after Viola Davis) — to win Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama at the age of 24.
Additionally, the show won five Creative Arts Emmys earlier this month, including Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for Colman Domingo and prizes for choreography, cinematography, makeup, and editing.
While Zendaya’s history-making night and Euphoria’s impressive Emmy haul are obviously good news for the show, it — and its stars — have been at the center of some serious off-screen intrigue this year. Admittedly, the gossipy hubbub about the politics of Sydney Sweeney’s extended family won’t have any real impact on Euphoria, but the show did lose one of its most beloved cast members, Barbie Ferreira. While Ferreira was a Season One fan favorite, she unexpectedly became a Season Two bit-player amid rumors of tension between her and creator/showrunner Sam Levinson. Ferreira did push back against those rumors and, upon leaving the show, said, “After four years of getting to embody the most special and enigmatic character Kat, I’m having to say a very teary-eyed goodbye.”