The black-and-white romantic drama film Malcolm & Marie, which stars Zendaya and John David Washington, was shot over the span of two weeks. Self-financed and without the benefits of a studio, Zendaya told Variety that it took two days to figure out what on earth they were doing. But eventually, the final result was reminiscent of theater.
This intriguing theatrical effect of Malcolm & Marie stems from the long takes, and how it was set over the course of one night. “I think it’s always like an actor’s dream kind of a little bit to do something like a play,” said Zendaya, whose love for acting was sparked during childhood because her mother worked at the California Shakespeare Theater.
Obviously filmed in the midst of the pandemic, Zendaya’s first priority was ensuring safety. “Our producers really did the hard work of consulting with different medical professionals and making sure that we had a very, very strict protocol,” she said. “Because if we were going to do this, the No. 1 thing is that people were safe. And so we kind of created a bubble, essentially.”
In crafting Malcolm & Marie, Zendaya said,“There were tough days, and it was exhausting. But here was so much family around us, it felt like. We created this set family of support.”
Malcolm & Marie is available to stream on Netflix beginning February 5th. Listen to the full conversation with Zendaya and Carey Mulligan below.