After months of hype, Malcolm & Marie starring Zendaya and John David Washington is now available on Netflix, and the response to the the toxic love story has been overwhelming. Just a few hours before the film was officially released, Zendaya took to Instagram to share an emotional thank you letter to the film's crew and to discuss her initial nerves about taking on such an extensive project for the first time in her acting career.
"Full of excitement and nervousness as this lil movie we made in lockdown with people I love is coming out in the next few hours," she wrote. "Nervousness for a few reasons. Normally I'm pretty self-critical and that leads me to be far too fearful to make things myself or trust myself enough to even try. This is really my first time believing that maybe I could. This is my first time being a leading lady, but also my first time being this creatively involved in something, producing something, co-financing something, owning something and sharing it all with my crew."
"Stop and acknowledge the people in our lives who make it possible to do the work we do and honestly, make life worth living."
Zendaya also took the opportunity to shout-out the condensed crew and all the hard work they put into the film that made it a reality. "We made this as a family, shot it in 14 days with a 22 person crew I am eternally grateful for," she said. "For their talent, their time, their hard work, and their willingness to believe in this film. If there's anything to learn from this year, and I hope from our little movie, it's gratitude for every moment and every person we get to love. To stop and acknowledge the people in our lives who make it possible to do the work we do and honestly, make life worth living. It comes in many forms and sometimes it's just a thank you."
In response to the heartfelt message, Zendaya's fellow stars hopped in the comments section to congratulate her on the film. "Congrats big Sis!!! What a Blessing," wrote Lion King star JD McCrary, followed by a comment from Hair Love director Matthew A. Cherry that read, "You killed it! Congrats!" Chloe Bailey also joined in to share her excitement and wrote, "So proud of you!!! SO EXCITED TO WATCH."
Zendaya, whose middle name is Maree — just one letter shy from the titular character's name — ended the post with a sweet and hopeful sentiment. "All that being said, on behalf of our little crew of 22, we hope you laugh (please laugh lol) and cry and hopefully enjoy this little thing we made with a whole lot of love. Love Maree (I spell mine with two E's)."