Born on September 2, 1966, in Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, Mexico, Salma Hayek was raised in a well-to-do Catholic home by her a Spanish mother and Lebanese father before she found fame in Hollywood after appearing in Robert Rodriguez‘s Desperado. Later film credits include Once Upon a Time in Mexico, After the Sunsetand Frida.
Salma Hayek Jiménez was born on September 2, 1966, in Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, Mexico, the daughter of a Spanish mother and Lebanese father. Raised in a well-to-do Catholic home, Hayek attended a convent school in Louisiana at the age of 12 and lived with her aunt in Houston, Texas, during her teens. After a brief stint at a university in Mexico City, she dropped out to pursue a career in acting, eventually becoming a soap star in her native Mexico.
In 1991, the ambitious Salma Hayek moved to Los Angeles, California, determined to improve her English and become a Hollywood actress. After small gigs, she landed a role oppositeAntonio Banderas in 1995’s Desperado. The success of the film garnered her work in relatively lackluster movies, including the teen thriller The Faculty, 1999’s Wild Wild West and 1997’s Fools Rush In. Subsequently, Hayek became engaged with smaller, independent pictures and began her own production company, Ventanarosa.
Hayek’s increasingly intellectual and passionate approach to filmmaking culminated in her dream role in 2002’s Frida, which she both produced and starred in (as Frida Kahlo). The film was nominated for six Academy Awards, including a best actress nomination for Hayek—making her the first Latin actress to be nominated in that category.
Large-scale projects followed the success of Frida, including directing 2002’s The Maldonado Miracle; starring in the final episode of the Desperado trilogy, Once Upon a Time in Mexico(2003); and appearing in the heist thriller After the Sunset (2004) with Pierce Brosnan.
Emmy Award winner and Oscar nominee Salma Hayek went on to serve as executive producer of the hit television series Ugly Betty. Based on the Colombian telenovela Yo Soy Betty La Fea, the series ran from 2006 to 2010, premiering on ABC and garnering a Golden Globe win (best comedy) in 2007. Also in 2007, the show’s star,America Ferrera, won the Emmy Award for outstanding lead actress in a comedy series.
Demonstrating her comedic skills, Hayek made a series of guest appearances on the popular sitcom 30 Rock in 2009. She played a nurse who becomes romantically involved with a television network executive played by Alec Baldwin. The actress went on to appear opposite Adam Sandler in the 2010 comedy Grown Ups.
Hayek began dating French entrepreneur Francois-Henri Pinault in 2006, and the couple became engaged the following year. Hayek gave birth to daughter Valentina Paloma Pinault on September 21, 2007, in Los Angeles, California. The couple later married on Valentine’s Day in 2009, in Paris, France, and held a second ceremony soon after in Venice. Hayek previously dated several actors, including Edward Norton, Edward Atterton and Richard Crenna Jr.