Ronnie Spector, who died at age 78 on Monday, was one of the best-known musicians in the 1960s girl group era, forming The Ronnettes with help from producer and ex-husband Phil Spector. With author Vince Waldron, she wrote her 1990 memoir Be My Baby: How I Survived Mascara, Miniskirts, and Madness about her music career and abusive marriage to Spector. Zendaya, who is set to play Ronnie Spector in an upcoming biopic about her life, career, and marriage, remembered her time with the singer in an Instagram post. “Thank you for sharing your life with me, I could listen to your stories for hours and hours,” wrote the Euphoria actress, “Thank you for your unmeasured talent, your unwavering love for performing, your strength, resilience and your grace.” She wished “everyone got to experience” Spector in the way she did, as she got to know the singer intimately to prepare for her role.
As executive producer on the project, Spector chose Zendaya herself to play her in the forthcoming feature, according to Deadline’s initial reporting of the film. Spector’s life rights and memoir Be My Baby sold to A24 in September 2020 and will focus on Spector’s early years in the music industry and her marriage to producer Phil Spector. New Regency, who worked with Zendaya on Malcolm and Marie, will also be partnering with A24 on the film.