Inside Salma Hayek and Antonio Banderas’ 27-Year Friendship

The actors have collaborated in at least seven films.

Timothy Hiatt/Getty Images

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Over the course of their illustrious careers, Antonio Banderas and Salma Hayek Pinault have appeared in at least seven films together. Fox News reported Wednesday that they have a strong friendship too.

Antonio Banderas’ Career

Antonio Banderas launched his acting career about 40 years ago. His role as Tom Hanks’ lover in 1993’s Philadelphia was relatively minor but saw him gain significant attention due to the cultural importance of the film.

After Philadelphia, Banderas’ career grew by leaps and bounds. He was in the main cast of 1994’s Interview with the Vampire, played the lead role in 1995’s Desperado, and costarred with Madonna in the musical Evita.

Also, Banderas found a new collaborator in director Robert Rodriguez. In addition to Desperado, they launched the lucrative Spy Kids franchise in 2001 and made 2003’s Once Upon a Time in Mexico, in which Banderas returned as the El Mariachi character he played in Desperado.

Banderas teamed with various directors for a few other notable films, like Frida (2002), The Mask of Zorro (1998), and The Legend of Zorro (2005). After that movie, Antonio Banderas went through a bit of a slump — until he reunited with Almodóvar for 2011’s skin-crawlingly creepy The Skin I Live In.

Salma Hayek Pinault’s Career

The film actress and producer is most widely known as Salma Hayek, but was born in September 1966 as Salma Valgarma Hayek Jiménez. For most of her career, Salma Hayek Pinault was simply known as Salma Hayek.

She changed her name to Salma Hayek Pinault after marrying businessman François-Henri Pinault in 2009.

At any rate, Hayek actually developed her acting career initially on TV. In 1982, she appeared on the Mexican TV show Un Nuevo Amanecer. After winning praise for that role, Hayek blew up in Mexico when — at age 23 — she took on the titular role in Teresa, a telenovela.

Even though she earned accolades for that performance as well, Hayek was set on breaking into the film industry. She moved to Los Angeles in 1991 and played a number of small parts for a handful of years.

It wasn’t until her appearance in 1995’s Desperado, the Robert Rodriguez film starring Antonio Banderas, that Hayek finally broke through.

Hayek’s best-known projects to date, besides Desperado, are Frida, From Dusk Till Dawn, Wild Wild West, House of Gucci, Beatriz at Dinner, and TV’s 30 Rock.

Antonio and Salma’s Friendship

Antonio Banderas and Salma Hayek walking away from burning flames in a scene from the film ‘Desperado’, 1995. (Photo by Columbia Pictures/Getty Images)

In making Desperado, Banderas and Hayek became friends, according to Fox News. They subsequently collaborated in many more films, including both Puss in Boots movies, Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over, and Four Rooms.

According to Fox News, Hayek said the following about her friend on a podcast:”One of the things I was afraid of was Antonio — he was an absolute gentleman and so nice, and we’re still super close friends — but he was very free,” she said last year on the “Armchair Expert” podcast. “It scared me that for him, it was like nothing. I started crying, and he was like, ‘Oh my God. You’re making me feel terrible.’” 

It doesn’t appear that Hayek has had any issues working with Banderas since then.

Read More: “Salma Hayek Pays Angelina Jolie A Tremendous Compliment

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