A new trailer for “Challengers” starring Zendaya, Mike Faist, and Josh O’Connor dropped today, and fans of the stars are more than excited to see them return to the big screen. The film follows Zendaya as fictional tennis star turned coach Tashi Duncan as her husband Art (Mike Faist) faces off against his rival Patrick (Josh O’Connor), who also happens to be his wife’s ex boyfriend. The three found themselves in a love triangle years prior to the events of this sports infused romantic comedy.
The trailer for Luca Guadagnino’s ‘CHALLENGERS’ starring Zendaya, Josh O’Connor and Mike Faist has been released.
In theaters September 15, 2023.pic.twitter.com/Gvx8svs6qq
— Film Updates (@FilmUpdates) June 20, 2023
The film, directed by Luca Guadagnino (notably of “Bones And All”) filmed in Boston, Massachusetts in 2022. The plot is receiving largely positive reviews, with many excited to see Zendaya portray a character in a romance film after years of sci-fi and drama films and television shows. The actress notably plays teenage drug addict Rue Bennett on HBO’s hit show “Euphoria.”
So happy that Zendaya finally gets to be hot on screen https://t.co/PUxuxulVUR
— I Could’ve Just Sat On In With Massa (@WrittenByHanna) June 20, 2023
like they’ve really had Zendaya in the trenches for years ???? pic.twitter.com/sO2wmIxwwD
— ice???? (@iceriot2000) June 20, 2023
Social Media Reactions
One notable line from the trailer has already attracted viral attention. Many noted how refreshing it was to see a Black woman in a position of power in a rom-com. Others turned the already quotable line into a reaction meme across Twitter.
— Carly Lane-Perry (@carlylane) June 20, 2023
The line immediately sparked jokes about Zendaya’s real-life boyfriend, fellow actor and “Spiderman” co-star Tom Holland.
— kira ???? (@kirawontmiss) June 20, 2023
The film marks a welcome genre departure for Zendaya, who has paved a post-Disney star career in emotionally demanding roles.
Zendaya in a movie where men fight for her and she’s back on twitter…it’s a great day pic.twitter.com/bM9Bc8ypMf
— Nicolas is happy (@niggaolas) June 20, 2023
Elsewhere, one fan recalled a video of the actress attending a tennis match last year and getting really into the action on the court. Suddenly, her passionate reactions to the game made sense–she was doing research.
The trailer has many excited for a return of the romantic comedy genre, which dominated the 90s and 2000s. Gen Z’s discovery of films like “How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days” and more continue to bring popularity to a genre that many thought died with 2010s popular culture. Now, “Challengers” joins a growing list of contemporary comedies, including the upcoming “Barbie”, and “No Hard Feelings.”
Zendaya in a psychosexual Rom-com, Jennifer Lawrence in a raunchy comedy, Margot robbie as barbie, halle Bailey as Ariel….. 2023 cinema has truly been Yassified. pic.twitter.com/sH24lPZXIP
— Dani (@writteninstar5) June 20, 2023
“Challengers” hits theaters on September 15.