Perhaps we didn’t deserve the powers of Lil Nas X and Zendaya combining. Maybe it was too strong. Maybe we just weren’t ready. Whatever the case, it’s not happening anytime soon—but it almost did. In a new cover story for Variety’s Power of Young Hollywood issue, Nas revealed that he was offered a part in the second season of HBO’s generation-defining hit Euphoria, but turned it down.
“I was actually going to do ‘Euphoria,’ but I didn’t want to take time away from finishing my album,” the rapper told the magazine. “I definitely want to get into acting, but I feel I have to give it my all, and I want to focus on music for right now. I want my first movie to be amazing.”
Indeed, Euphoria is currently filming its second season, but Nas has spent the summer promoting his upcoming debut album Montero instead. It was probably the better choice for him personally. The first single “Call Me By Your Name (Montero)” is a bonafide summer hit, defying the one-hit-wonder expectations affixed to him during the meme-ified breakthrough of “Old Town Road.” The openly gay rapper also just became Spotify’s top male rapper in terms of monthly listeners, karmically replacing Da Baby in the spot. Expectations for the album, scheduled to be released sometime later this year, are high.
Of course, anyone who has seen Nas on TikTok or in acting bits in recent videos like “Industry Baby,” figures he could probably handle an acting role one day. He’s a natural entertainer.
As for what he would have brought to Euphoria, we may never know. This is purely speculation, but the show recently confirmed it added Dominic Fike, another Gen Z-popular actor to the show’s cast for season two (you might have seen him make out with Nas in a recent Brockhampton video). Fike told Variety that he “plays a ‘homie’ who hangs out with Rue and Jules.” There’s no telling if that was the role Nas was offered, but as long as Rue and Jules have someone to hang out with, that’s nice. As for Zendaya and Lil Nas X ever combining creative forces at some point—we’ll just have to wait. Maybe one day we’ll be worthy.