GROW­ING UP FAST

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - TV Guide - - Front Page -

some­thing to be afraid of; it’s a beau­ti­ful thing.”

is adapted from an Is­raeli se­ries of the same name and is ex­ec­u­tive-pro­duced by rap­per Drake and his man­ager Fu­ture the Prince.

Levin­son most re­cently cowrote the ac­claimed HBO film

about the fall of Bernie Mad­off, di­rected by his fa­ther. And with quite the eye for up­com­ing young tal­ent, he as­sem­bled a stel­lar en­sem­ble cast for in­clud­ing Maude Apa­tow, Eric Dane, Storm Reid, Syd­ney Sweeney, trans­gen­der ac­tress and model Hunter Schafer, and Aus­tralia’s Ja­cob Elordi.

Zen­daya most re­cently earned ac­co­lades for her per­for­mance in

along­side Hugh Jack­man, and will soon reprise her role as M. J. in the Spi­der-Man fran­chise,

While is a 180- de­gree shift for her, she is fol­low­ing in the well-trod­den steps of former Disney stars who grew up and shook off their teen star­dom, in­clud­ing Lind­say Lohan, Mi­ley Cyrus, Se­lena Gomez and Demi Lo­vato. It ap­pears couldn’t have ar­rived at a bet­ter time.

“I’ve been work­ing straight since I was 13. I never didn’t have a job and I went through a phase af­ter fin­ish­ing with Disney where I felt stag­nant. Noth­ing con­nected to me un­til I read the script for

I’ve never been so cap­tured by any­thing in my life.”

Zen­daya’s char­ac­ter is also the se­ries’ nar­ra­tor. “We fol­low it in Rue’s brain and the way she might process in­for­ma­tion. That cap­tured my at­ten­tion. In many ways it’s the way my brain works as well. I just felt so con­nected to her, even though we have very dif­fer­ent lives,” she shrugs.

“For some rea­son I feel very sim­i­lar to her. Maybe she’s like a lit­tle sis­ter to me and she’s some­one I want to pro­tect. I want her to make the right de­ci­sions.”

Now one of the world’s most pop­u­lar role mod­els for girls and young women, Zen­daya quickly showed she was much more than a singer who can act. She’s also a best- sell­ing au­thor, af­ter the 2013 pub­li­ca­tion of her book

And to her credit, she’s un­afraid to make bold choices, as ev­i­denced by her re­cent Met Gala ap­pear­ance where she stunned on­look­ers of the camp-themed event by walk­ing the red car­pet as an homage to her Disney days.

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