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A Very Thorough Timeline Of Tom Holland And Zendaya's Surprisingly Low-Key Relationship

Fans have been manifesting this romance since, like, 2016.
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PHOTO: (LEFT TO RIGHT) INSTAGRAM/zendaya, INSTAGRAM/tomholland2013
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When news that Tom Holland and Zendaya were officially, definitely dating, it was long-awaited and joyous news to their fans, who have pretty much been manifesting this relationship since 2016, when they first bonded/showed the world their unmissable chemistry while filming Spider-Man: Homecoming.

If you need some help sorting out the details of their relationship, you are not alone and that's totally fair—the couple has made a point of keeping things pretty low-key, making it tough to pin down *exactly* when they took the leap from just amazing friends who everyone not-so-secretly shipped to bona fide couple. Keep scrolling for all the answers the internet has to offer about Tom and Zendaya's romance.

July 10, 2016

Spider-Man: Homecoming didn't come out until 2017, but fans got a sneak peek at their adorable vibes the year before, when they started making cameos in each other's IG posts, like this picture of them enjoying a pool day with a third friend that Tom shared in July 2016.

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November 9, 2016

That fall, Zendaya gave an early look at just how close her bond with Tom was when she posted a picture of their Hollywood Reporter cover, along with a full-on aww-inducing caption. "Amidst all the chaos and sadness...this one good thing did happen to me today," she wrote. "Honored to share it with the very best...Spider-Man himself @tomholland2013."

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July 5, 2017

As part of the promotional blitz leading up to the release of Spider-Man: Homecoming, Tom and Zendaya appeared on Lip Sync Battle, and Tom's mashup of "Singin' In The Rain" and "Umbrella" promptly went viral. The performance highlighted the pair's sense of humor and also featured Tom briefly grinding on (you know, like you do with all of your most platonic friends).

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Early July 2017

Within days of Spider-Man: Homecoming's premiere on July 7, 2017, rumors started circulating that Tom and Zendaya were a couple, IRL (not surprising, on account the aforementioned incredible chemistry they shared in the movie).

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getty images/ROBERT MARQUARDT

"They started seeing each other while they were filming Spider-Man," a source told People of their alleged romance. "They've been super careful to keep it private and out of the public eye but they've gone on vacations with each other and try and spend as much time as possible with one another."

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Another insider offered some insight into what made their rumored relationship work at the time, saying, "They're both really ambitious and they challenge each other—but, most importantly, they make each other crack up. They seem to have a really similar sense of humor and love joking around together. They have great banter back and forth."

Unfortunately, Tom had already shut down dating rumors around the same time, telling People he and Z were BFFs in an interview shortly before the movie premiered.

"We are like the best of friends. She's so great and amazing," he said at the time. "I'm a little worried [about dealing with fame … but] Zendaya is super famous and she's been through this and I just call her up and say, 'How do I manage being famous?' I'm very glad I have a friend like her."

July 13, 2017

Zendaya and Tom publicly dragged the romance rumors in a hilarious exchange on Twitter that highlighted their shared sense of humor and, TBH, only made fans ship them harder.

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getty images/KARWAI TANG

"Wait, wait...my favorite is when it says we go on vacations together HA!" Zendaya wrote in reference to the People report. "I haven't been on a vacation in years!hbu @TomHolland1996 ???"

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Tom replied, asking, "does the press tour count?"

August 2017

Zendaya continued to deny that she and Tom were anything more than best friends throughout the summer. In a Variety interview published August 8, she said, "He's a great dude. He's literally one of my best friends. This past how many months, we've had to do press tours together. There's very few people that will understand what that's like at 20 years old."

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The next day, Entertainment Tonight reported that, even though Zendaya still insisted she and Tom were just friends, she wasn't surprised by the dating rumors.

"It happens all the time, and of course we expected it," she said. "I mean, it comes with the territory. It comes with the job, so it's all good."

December 16, 2017

By the end of the year, reports circulated that Tom had met Zendaya's parents, Claire Stoermer and dad Kazembe Ajamu Coleman, and that they were "charmed" by him.

"Tom has met Zendaya's family and they love him," a source told Us Weekly at the time. "They are still seeing each other. It's been about a year."

May 8, 2018

The following spring, Zendaya attended the Met Gala and Tom was so stunned by her lewk that he posted about it on Instagram, where he captioned the photo, "All hail the queen. Killing it, mate."

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October 12, 2018

In October, pictures of Zendaya holding to Tom while the pair filmed scenes for Spider-Man: Far From Home made the rounds online, reminding fans just how much they wanted T & Z's onscreen love to be real, too. Can you blame them though? Look at her BEAMING smile:

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May 9, 2019

Tom reignited more-than-friends rumors when people noticed his, um, interesting tag placement in this group picture on Instagram. Zendaya joined the masses in raising an eyebrow at the tag and commented, "I'm assuming because you don't know how to work [Instagram], that's the reasoning behind my name placement."

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Still, when a fan asked her later if the Tom's tagging placement was a subliminal slip, Z insisted it wasn't anything deeper than a mistake. "Nah, he's just Instagram stupid," she tweeted.

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Tom later addressed the snafu in an interview with British GQ in April 2021.

"You mean, because I tagged Zendaya over my groin in an Instagram post?" he joked when asked about the ongoing relationship rumors. "That was so funny; it was obviously a mistake. But in all seriousness, it is also incredibly frustrating. It's very nerve-racking. It means that if you are dating someone, you have to be really conscious of their feelings, because if something does happen between the two of you, it's not just happening between the two of you, it's happening in front of the entire world. And it can be very complicated. It’s one of the things I worry about most, of all the things in my career."

June 30, 2021

Rumors that Tom and Zendaya were a couple died down for a couple of years, during which time they were both liked to other people (Zendaya reportedly dated her Euphoria costar Jacob Elordi, while Tom was linked to Nadia Parkes). Then, in June, TMZ reported that they had been spotted getting dinner on what appeared to be a date in Los Angeles.

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July 1, 2021

The next day, the dating rumors were upgraded to "confirmed" when Tom and Zendaya were photographed making out in a car in LA (Page Six ran the pics, which were quasi internet-breaking).

August 2021

Tom and Zendaya continued to act like a couple throughout the summer, attending the wedding of their friend Josh Florez (where they were snapped in pictures that ended up on Insta).

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September 1, 2021

Tom and Zendaya went Instagram official with their relationship on her birthday. Tom shared a behind-the-scenes picture from the Spider-Man set, captioned, "My MJ, have the happiest of birthdays. Gimme a call when your up xxx."

Five hours later, Zendaya commented on the post, "Calling now."

October 12, 2021

Zendaya openly gushed about Tom in her cover interview with InStyle magazine, praising his passion about playing Spider-Man and his perfectionism on set.

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"Our director allowed me to come in every day [of the shoot], and it was cool to see how he cares so much about his work and making it right," she explained. "I watched him do a fight scene all day, which is exhausting. He'd do a move, come back to the monitors, watch it, and say, 'I can do that better.' I'd be like, 'Dude; you got it.' But he wants us to be perfect, and I really appreciate that."

She also took a moment to share some of the things she loves most about Tom, who appears to be turning her into an honorary Brit.

"Yeah, he's a fun time," she added. "Very charismatic, can make anybody feel comfortable and have a good laugh and a good chat. A good chat—I sound so British."

October 18, 2021

Tom showed his support for Zendaya's latest movie, Dune, on Instagram, sharing a stunning picture of her from the movie's premiere captioned simply, "Dune."

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This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.