Salma Hayek: Snapshot

Name
Salma Hayek
Date of Birth
September 02, 1966
Birth Place
Coatzacoalcos, Mexico
Salma Hayek departed Teresa, the Mexican soap opera that made her famous in her home country, after two years. In the U.S., she paid her dues with bit parts before her break opposite Antonio Banderas in 1995's gun-heavy revenge flick, Desperado.

Hayek has decried the lack of quality roles for Latinas in Hollywood, but instead of fading into obscurity, she created new roles as a producer. She produced and starred in Frida, which earned Hayek an Oscar nomination for Best Actress, and as executive producer, she created the hit ABC series Ugly Betty, which made actress America Ferrera a household name and Emmy winner.

In September 2007, Hayek–who dated actors Edward Norton and Josh Lucas–and French businessman François-Henri Pinault welcomed daughter Valentina. After calling off their 16-month engagement in 2008, Hayek and Pinault reunited and married on Valentine's Day 2009.

Salma Hayek: Five Fun Facts

  1. Although she went on to become a cosmetics spokeswoman for Avon and Revlon, Salma Hayek wasn't allowed to wear makeup until she was 15. "I'd trick my mom – I'd bite my lips or take her lipstick and rub it on my cheeks," she told In Style.
  2. In college, Salma Hayek was kidnapped while out on a date. She was held for ransom for nine hours until her date's parents paid. After the incident, Hayek dropped out of college to pursue acting.
  3. Salma Hayek is an accomplished gymnast who once had aspirations of becoming an Olympic competitor.
  4. Antonio Banderas gave Salma Hayek two spider monkeys, Mariachi and Carolina, named after the characters they played in Desperado. Unfortunately, Mariachi was eaten by a cat and Carolina died a week later of heartbreak.
  5. After watching Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory as a child, Salma Hayek decided to become an actress.

Salma Hayek: Biography

1988

Salma Hayek

Sudsy Beginnings

Hayek lands a small part in a Mexican soap opera, or telenovela in Spanish, called Nuevo Amanecer (New Dawn). The following year, she lands the title role in the popular telenovela Teresa, which earns her star status in her native country.

1995

Salma Hayek

August 25

Getting Desperate

After traveling back to Mexico to star in the award-winning El Callejón de los Milagros ("The Alley of Miracles"), Hayek gets her big break in the U.S. starring opposite Antonio Banderas in the gun-slinging Robert Rodriguez drama Desperado. The role gains the actress a wide audience as well as a longtime friend in Rodriguez.

1996

Salma Hayek

January 19

Vampire Vixen

Hayek continues to raise her profile after landing the role of Santanico Pandemonium, a stripper in the vampire-thriller From Dusk Till Dawn, starring George Clooney, written by Quentin Tarantino and directed by Robert Rodriguez.

Read More on Salma Hayek's Life

Photo Credits

Top Left: Ondrea Barbe/Corbis

BIOGRAPHY (top to bottom): AGENCIA MÉ XICO; DI CROLLALANZA ARALDO/SIPA; JOYCE RUDOLPH/DIMENSION FILMS

Edited by Julia Wang

Salma Hayek

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