Who will dominate the pop culture landscape in Q1 of 2024? Here’s what we can count on and look forward to: there will be so much Zendaya content for at least the first four months of the year. Because she has two major projects coming out to kick it off. 


The first, of course, is Dune: Part 2, scheduled for release on March 15. Which means promotion for the film will be happening concurrently with the final stages of award season. There is no overstating the anticipation for this movie. And in particular Zendaya in this movie because the fact that she was only in the first movie for like seven minutes was A Conversation, a conversation that the filmmakers and the studio were well aware of coming out of that experience. They’re going to go heavy on Zendaya for sure. 


Dune was a strong box office performer and an awards contender itself. It was pushed back because of the strike. Part 2 is considered one of the “crown jewels” of the Warner Bros lineup. They will be pushing it hard, leaning all the way into the marketing appeal of the Dune Fab Four: Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Florence Pugh, and Austin Butler. All of them are more than enough on their own, but together? On a press tour? Serving looks on the same carpet? Those will be the viral moments of 2024 that we can actually predict. 

After Dune: Part 2 though, Zendaya will be back out there again for Challengers. Remember, Challengers was supposed to open the Venice Film Festival last summer until the strike meant that they rescheduled it for April 26. So Z’s presence over the next few months is in service of that film too. So there will definitely be a few magazine covers, it’s just a matter of which publication will be lucky enough to land her. It’s been a minute since she covered American Vogue – and I mention American Vogue in particular because… Zendaya, who has become a Met Gala highlight, has never co-chaired the Met Gala. 


The Met Gala is happening just a couple of weeks after the release of Challengers and Zendaya skipped the Met Gala 2023. This year’s theme was announced late last year – “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion” – but the hosts have not yet been confirmed. The timing works out well. Putting her on the cover of American Vogue for the March, April, or May issues works out well too. I have a hard time believing that Anna Wintour would not have had Zendaya on her Met Gala co-chair wish list. 

And if that actually happens, imagine what we could be seeing: after weeks and weeks of whatever amazing fashion she delivers while promoting her two movies, Zendaya crowns off her press tour wardrobe with an appearance on the first Monday in May, at the Met Gala, on those red steps? Plus Tom Holland? It’ll be a nuclear event. 


For now, here’s the poster for Challengers that dropped yesterday. The vibe for this poster, at least to me, does not match the vibe of the trailer. As Sarah wrote all those months ago when the trailer came out, there was a sleazy energy to the preview that added to its appeal. It felt gritty and sweaty and provocative and grownup. “I’m taking such good care of my little white boys.” This poster though…? Isn’t giving any of that? So I’m now even more curious to see what this film will be. 

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