Oscar-nominated, Mexican-born actress Salma Hayek said in a new interview that people in the entertainment industry are “terrified to say the wrong thing now,” but she’s still noticed racism.
In the new issue of Town & Country, Hayek opens up about the sexual misconduct allegations she brought against producer Harvey Weinstein in a 2017 piece for the New York Times and what’s happened since. Hayek repeated her claim that Weinstein had denied her allegations against him, as well as those of Oscar-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o, because they are women of color.
“There is a theory that women of color are easier to discredit,” Hayek told the magazine.
She noted that her husband, as well as actors Antonio Banderas and close friend Penelope Cruz, were upset she hadn’t shared her Weinstein account with them previously.
When the interviewer asked if Hayek had experienced “other overt incidents of racism in the industry,” she replied, “millions.”
One example Hayek cited: “A lot of people are very shocked that I married who I married,” she said of her billionaire husband Francois-Henri Pinault, the chairman and CEO of Hering retail company, whose brands include Yves Saint Laurent and Gucci. “And some people are even intimidated now by me. But it’s another way of showing racism. They can’t believe this Mexican ended up in the life that she has, and they’re uncomfortable around me.”
Hayek’s next project is this month’s thriller The Hummingbird Project, with Jesse Eisenberg and Alexander Skarsgard, in which she plays the role of a brash trading tycoon who will stop at nothing to win. It was initially written for a man.
Such interesting roles are “rare,” Hayek said. “And if you’re Mexican they’re practically nonexistent.”
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