Zendaya on Her Return to the Met Gala After 5-Year Hiatus: 'Going Up the Steps Is Very Daunting'

The actress will co-chair this year's Met Gala on May 6

John Lamparski/Getty  Zendaya at 2019 Met Gala
John Lamparski/Getty Zendaya at 2019 Met Gala

Zendaya will make her grand return to the Met steps this year — and we can't wait.

The actress, 27, on the other hand, has some jitters.

Zendaya will co-chair this year's Met Gala alongside Jennifer Lopez, Bad Bunny and Chris Hemsworth and it'll be her first trip up the Met steps since 2019. While visiting Live with Kelly and Mark on April 23, she admitted that the Met Gala, while exciting, is also a bit "terrifying."

"Going up the steps is very daunting, and I haven't been back for maybe four or five years," she said. "So this is, like, my first time back at the Met in quite a while."

Host Kelly Ripa joked that designers must "fight to the death" to dress her, and the Challengers star responded that you'd have to check with her stylist Law Roach on that one.

<p>Mike Coppola/Getty</p> Zendaya at 2017 Met Gala

Mike Coppola/Getty

Zendaya at 2017 Met Gala

Related: Zendaya's Met Gala Looks Through the Years

Zendaya and Roach have been working together since the actress was 14, she told the audience, and the two have a close working relationship. So much so that he knows her and her style very well at this point.

"It's fun in the sense that I like to look at fashion as creativity," she said. "Even in press tours, it's a way to continue the creativity from the film. ... I like to just create characters, because ultimately sometimes, doing this for a living feels a little weird and awkward and I'm more of a shy, introverted person, so I get to create these characters. 'I'm this woman today who wears a green suit.' You get to embody this character for a day and clothes can do that for you."

Related: Met Gala Co-Chairs Through the Years

<p>Rabbani and Solimene Photography/Getty</p> Zendaya at 2018 Met Gala

Rabbani and Solimene Photography/Getty

Zendaya at 2018 Met Gala

Zendaya made her Met Gala debut in a custom Fausto Puglisi sun-motif dress, inspired by the 2015 theme, China: Through the Looking Glass. At the time, she called the experience "overwhelming but in the best kind of way." She went the following four years, and turned her appearance into a performance in 2019, when she embraced the Camp: Notes on Fashion theme a look that mixed cartoon with couture. She transformed into Cinderella with a light-up pale blue Tommy Hilfiger ballgown inspired by the Disney classic.

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty

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This year's Met Gala theme is “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion.” The coordinating Costume Institute exhibit will feature approximately 250 items — including 15 significant pieces, such as an 1877 Charles Frederick Worth silk satin ball gown — that span over 400 years of history.

The dress code — which is different from the theme — will be “The Garden of Time,” inspired by J.G. Ballard’s 1962 short story of the same name. According to Vogue, the dress code will be about "fleeting beauty."

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