8 Things to Know About Zendaya's New Movie 'Challengers'

Mar. 30 2024, Published 12:05 a.m. ET

Link to FacebookShare to XShare to Email

What Is ‘Challengers’ About?

Zendaya leads the upcoming film Challengers, which explores the story of a pro tennis player embroiled in a love triangle with former rivals.

The official synopsis reads, “Three players who knew each other when they were teenagers as they compete in a tennis tournament to be the world-famous grand slam winner and reignite old rivalries on and off the court.”

Article continues below advertisement

What to Know About Its Creators

Call Me by Your Name creator Luca Guiadagnino directed Challengers. He worked with Justin Kuritzkes on the script, while Sayombhu Mukdeeprom was the cinematographer.

Is ‘Challengers’ Based on a True Story?

Zendaya’s Challengers is not based on a true story. Still, the lead star underwent three months of training with pro tennis coach and former player Brad Gilbert, who also worked as the film’s consultant.

Article continues below advertisement

Who Is Zendaya’s Character in ‘Challengers’?

In Challengers, Zendaya plays Tashi, who wants to transform her husband into a grand slam champion in tennis. She pushes him to participate in a Challenger tennis tournament, where he plays against Patrick, Art’s former best friend and Tashi’s ex-boyfriend.

Article continues below advertisement

Who Are ‘Challengers’ Cast Members?

In addition to Zendaya, Mark Faist and Josh O’Connor appear in the film as Tashi’s husband and ex, respectively. Jake Jensen is also in the cast.

“I think those three characters in that movie are beautifully complex and really f------- up people that I love very much. And a sports film, why not? It’s hyperkinetic, and I do films, so it’s great,” Guadagnino said of the cast members when he spoke with IndieWire in 2022.

Article continues below advertisement

When Did It Start Filming?

Announced in February 2022, Challengers officially started filming on May 3, 2022. Its production mainly took place in Boston until the filming wrapped in June of the same year.

“She’s wonderful,” Guadagnino told Variety of Zendaya in October 2022. “I mean, wow. We edited the movie, and we almost actually don’t use any of her double. She’s so good.”

Article continues below advertisement

‘Challengers’ Trailer Released in 2023

Challengers released its first trailer on June 20, 2023, shocking fans because of Zendaya’s daring scenes in the upcoming sports film.

Article continues below advertisement

‘Challengers’ Release Date Confirmed After Initial Cancelation

Challengers was initially set to premiere at the 2023 Venice Film Festival. However, the creators confirmed it was pushed to the next year.

“After thoughtful consideration with our partners, and given the parameters that SAG-AFTRA has outlined for its membership, we have made the difficult decision to withdraw Challengers from this year’s Venice International Film Festival,” Amazon explained in a press release. “We look forward to celebrating the film when we can do so with our ensemble cast, director Luca Guadagnino, and the filmmaking team at a later date.”

Its release date has since been moved to April 26.


Want OK! each day? Sign up here!

Opt-out of personalized ads

© Copyright 2024 OK!™️. A DIVISION OF EMPIRE MEDIA GROUP INC. OK! is a registered trademark. All rights reserved. Registration on or use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Service, Privacy Policy and Cookies Policy. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services. Offers may be subject to change without notice.