In the early months of the pandemic, Emmy winner Zendaya, Tenet star John David Washington, and Euphoria creator Sam Levinson got together and made a movie. Malcolm & Marie was filmed between June and July (the fact that those count as “early months” is… not great), and the shoot was reportedly “compliant with WGA, DGA, and SAG-AFTRA approvals and COVID-19 safety protocols.” The plot was originally kept under wraps, but we now know that the black-and-white film is about a couple, played by Zendaya and Washington, whose relationship is tested when they wonder if “there’s someone who loved them better.” Netflix acquired the film for $30 million based on a promo reel.
“It’s basically kind of birthed within quarantine conversations Sam [Levinson] and I had in wanting to create something safely,” Zendaya told podcast OTHERtone about why she agreed to star in Malcolm & Marie. “I really wanted to be creative and I hadn’t worked in a long time, through that year anyway. The last thing I acted on was Euphoria, and I had a year of not really doing any acting. I really missed what I loved.”
Here’s the official plot synopsis.
When filmmaker Malcolm (John David Washington) and his girlfriend Marie (Zendaya), return home from a movie premiere and await his film’s critical response, the evening takes a turn as revelations about their relationship surface, testing the couple’s love.
Malcolm & Marie comes out on Netflix on February 21.