CBS Protest Gets 'Dogma' Ads Pulled
The Velocity of Salma.(Review)
Author/s: Max Harrold
Issue: June 8, 1999
WILD STAR SALMA HAYEK SAYS IT WAS PASSION THAT FINALLY SOLD PEOPLE ON THE VELOCITY OF GARY
With its swirl of muscular drag queens, a porn star dying of AIDS, a deal transvestite, and a gay hustler, The Velocity of Gary* (*Not His Real/Varec) pulls he punches with its dreamy yet harsh take on New York City street life. Which could explain why the film languished off-screen for the past year while Hollywood execs bandied it about like a hot potato.
Enter Salma Hayek. Fired up by the heat of her plum role alongside Will Smith in one of this summer's big guns, Wild Wild West, she mode calls fop cash during Velocity's filming and later for its release. Voila! There's a movie in the house. "I'm still making fucking carls," says Hayek, whose company, Ventanarosa, was thanked with a credit for producing. "I met all these passionate people in the film. It was contagious. I just really wanted this to happen." Big-time. "Salma has pull," says Velocity's director, Dan Ireland. "She saved the movie."
Most actresses with a potential blockbuster in the can and a lucrative Revlon cosmetics endorsement contract in their pocket would have little patience for a small indie like Velocity. The film zeroes in on a sassy, jobless waitress (Hayek), a hunky gay hustler (Thomas Jane, else in this summer's mega-action flick Deep Blue Sea), and Valentine (Vincent D'Onofrio), the bisexual porn star whose yearning for both cements a tragic love triangle.
"She lives for [Valentino]," says Hayek of her character. "She has unconditional love for him without even knowing it." Has she ever been in a similar situation? "No," the actress says curtly. Even so, she says, "I had to play this part."
For Hayek, the film is a poignant memorial to the many who have died of AIDS complications: "I don't know anybody who hasn't lost someone. The problem with this disease, especially at the beginning, was that it [affected] the way people felt about themselves." The film, she adds, addresses the connection between sickness and iow self-esteem. BUt a lack of self-confidence is not an issue for Hayek personally. "I'm very happy to be une of the first [Latinas] pushing the envelop," says the Mexico-bern star. Her next mission: producing and starring in a biopic about tragic Mexican painter--and lesbian icon--Frida Kablo for Ventanarosa. Perhaps not wanting to jinx the project, she'll say ne mere. Showing her mettle, she says, "That deserves its own interview."-- Harrold
COPYRIGHT 1999 Liberation Publications, Inc.
COPYRIGHT 2000 Gale Group