Zendaya and Josh O’Connor cruelly tease us about their delayed film Challengers

It was a down-low dirty trick to release something as tantalizing as the Challengers trailer,

 and then delay the film to next year (you can blame the studio, which decided not to go with a fall premiere since none of the actors can promote it). 

Nevertheless, there’s a little bit of pre-strike press for the film trickling out that will have to keep us satisfied for now.

One such item is a conversation between stars Josh O’Connor and Zendaya for VMan magazine,

 wherein they gush about the amazing process of making the film and how great the final product is. 

Do not read if you get cinematic FOMO, because again, the rest of us won’t be able to see it until April 2024

. But if you want to whet your appetite, O’Connor describes the Challengers script as “so delicious” and firmly believes it’s a movie people will return to multiple times

. “It can be one of those films that you can just keep watching because it’s such a thrill. It’s like a drug. 

The excitement just drives you right through to the film and it doesn’t feel long, you don’t labor through it,” he says.

 “So for me, that’s our biggest achievement the fact that someone would want to go back and watch it again. That’s a really great compliment, I think.”

If you’re looking for real details about the story, both actors agree that “there’s a villain-esque quality there to all of the characters,” as Zendaya puts it.

 O’Connor personally based his performance in part on tennis player Nick Kyrgios for his quick temper. “

But then, for me, when I first read that script, I was like, ‘Patrick’s a villain and Tashi is kind of a villain, and then, poor Art,’” he explains.

 “And then for me, there was this revelation moment where I was like, ‘Holy shit, the little snake.

’ I think that was like a big breakthrough for me with the character because I slowly discovered that Art has his own darkness ,

and he’s definitely a puppet master in different moments—We’re all the puppet master at different moments.”

The stars also agree that director Luca Guadagnino is good at “thinking about the script within the script, carving out things I didn’t see about the characters,”

 she says. “We talked about it a lot, but there are so many layers there and I think he’s good at finding that nuance, you know?”


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