Maybe this will encourage her Dune co-star Timothée Chalamet to pursue his “sports star, swish” dreams. Per The Hollywood Reporter, Zendaya has been cast in Challengers, a romantic drama set in the world of professional tennis. Call Me By Your Name director Luca Guadagnino will helm the project, with a script written by Justin Kuritzkes. Zendaya is set to star as Tashi, a tennis player turned coach who helps transform her husband, Art, from a mediocre player into a renowned grand-slam champion. “To jolt him out of a recent losing streak, she makes him play a ‘Challenger’ event — close to the lowest level of tournament on the pro tour — where he finds himself standing across the net from the once-promising, now burnt-out Patrick: his former best friend and Tashi’s former boyfriend,” the movie’s logline reads. West Side Story’s Mike Faist is in talks to play the husband, while Josh O’Connor (The Crown, God’s Own Country) is in talks to play the ex.
According to Matthew Belloni’s newsletter, Puck, which first reported Zendaya’s casting, Zendaya will receive more than $10 million for the project, which she is also producing alongside Guadagnino and Spider-Man: No Way Home producer Amy Pascal. Although the tennis-themed movie hasn’t served up a release date yet, Challengers reportedly plans to begin shooting on the East Coast in the spring.