She sucks at mathematics and knows how to make a career with an accent. On top of that, she likes Swedish filmmakers. Salma Hayek stars in Traktor's first Motion Picture.
She is incredibly beautiful. She's smart. She's talented - and she has taken Hollywood by storm.
Salma Hayek is one of the frontrunners in the new generation latino actors which is gaining respect and attention in Hollywood.
Her life is in other words, as good as perfect. And she seldom needs to think about her diet. She eats what she wants, never counts calories and refuses to work out.
Salma Hayek grew up in Coatzacoalcos, Mexiko, as the only child of an operasinger and a businessman. As many, she went through an identity crisis when she was young.
Salma Hayek became a star over night, which led to that she landed one of the leads in another huge Mexican tv-show, "Teresa".
After a few smaller parts, Salma got her big breakthrough in the movie "Desperado" (1995) opposite Antonio Banderas. She returned to Mexico and shot "El Callejon de los milagros" (1995) which gave her an Ariel (Mexican Academy Award) nomination. Two years later she got her first lead part as a beautiful zombie in "From Dusk till Dawn" opposite George Clooney.
After a number of films, including "Chain of Fools", Salma Hayek is one of Hollywood's most desired actresses. She has been doing so well, that she has got herself a runawayspot in the mountains with an astounding view of the ocean from every room.
And after a number of failed romances, she has found THE man. Salma, 32, is seeing the towtime Oscar nominee, actor Edward Norton.
In Hollywood, the gossip is on if they will be next next couple to walk down the aisle.
- "I like kind men and Ed is very kind! Maybe it doesn't sound too sexy, but if you have been hurt a number of times, it becomes important", Salma says.
- "I like men who respect women and that aren't afraid to make a fool out of themselves. I don't care how they look. But I'm very lucky, cause Ed is very good-looking."
- "One of the reasons that I became an actress was to get out of the math. This whole count-the-calories thing makes me stressed out!"
But it's a truth with modification. Hollywood's scary, thin beauty ideal also applies to Salma. If the scales passes 55 kilos, she goes on a diet. And when that happens, the surroundings should stay away.
- "I can get very moody. If I weigh two or three kilos too much I don't eat dinner for a few days."
It hasn't always been easy for the Hollywood star. When she was twelve, she managed to talk herself to a spot in a Catholic school in Louisiana. Two years later she was kicked out after making practical jokes on the nuns.
16 years old, she scared her parents to death by going into punk.
- "I wore t-shirts with spikes and my hair stood right up. After that I went through an extremely conservative time. But not in style. My boyfriend was very jealous and because of that, I didn't wear clothes that showed my figure. I wore big sweaters and long skirts."
After that, she began to wear strict brand costumes, but soon passed to pink sweatpants. For someone totally without a sense of style, Salma is very proud.
- "I still had some kind of sense of style. I never threw things together. It would be a very thought-through, disgusting combination."
Salma Hayek's parents have finally accepted her career choice. But they haven't always been there to support her. Her Libanese dad and Latino mom first forced her to study international relations at the University of Mexico. They expected her to get married and get a normal nine to five job.
During her time of studies, she was forced to keep her acting dreams hidden from her parents. And when she finally decided to tell them, her father was not happy. But Salma had decided - she would make her dream come true with or without the support of her overprotective parents.
They weren't exactly thrilled when they saw their daughter in a line of tv-commercials, but they soon changed their point of view when she was cast in the most popular soap in Mexico, "Nuevo amanecer".
Despite that she was headed to be the biggest tv-star in the country, Salma wanted more - she wanted to conquer America. In 1991, Salma moved to Los Angeles. All she had with her was a really bad English and 600 dollars.
- It was tough - almost a "mission impossible".
-"There is still no real boom for latino films. Jennifer Lopez has no accent. She grew up in New York and spoke English, not Spanish. Her success is very important because she represents a different culture, but it hasn't helped me. I grew up in Mexico, not in the USA, and the fact is that there were no roles for Latin-Americans. I had to convince everybody that my accent wouldn't be a problem, but an access. But everybody is so afraid to take take risks. Everybody wants a 20-million dollar hit and anything that could stop such a success is seen as a danger."
- Moving to the USA wasn't the easiest thing I've done. I thought I would learn English in three months and become a star within a year. It took me a year to learn English and eight to become a star. But still - I'm not complaining.
She has received brilliant reviews of her latest part in "Chain of Fools". It's a comedy about a barber played by Steve Zahn. His life becomes very complicated when he becomes the owner of a stolen treasure of antique coins.
Salma Hayek plays the detective who is investigating the case and the falls head-over-heels for Zahn.
- "It's a great movie. And working with Steve Zahn was amazing."
Aftonbladet Puls, March 2d, 2001
Transcript and translation by Linda of Starring Julia Roberts Thank you!