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The amazing Salma Hayek was born on September 2, 1966, in the oil boomtown of Coatzacoalcos, Mexico. Hayek has freely admitted that she and her brother, Sami, were spoiled rotten by her well-to-do Lebanese-Mexican businessman father and her Mexican-born opera-singing mother. After having seen Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971) in a local movie theatre, Salma decided she wanted to become an actress. Her education included a stint at a New Orleans convent school, where she pulled pranks on the nuns by setting their clocks back three hours. She was soon expelled. Only after attending Mexico City’s Universidad Iberoamericana did she feel ready to pursue acting seriously
She soon landed the title role in “Teresa” (1989), a hugely successful soap opera which earned her the star status in her native Mexico. However, anxious to make films and to explore her talent and passion, Hayek left both “Teresa” (1989) and Mexico in 1991. Heartbroken fans spread rumors that she was having a secret affair with Mexico’s president and left to escape his wife’s wrath.
At long last, Salma made her way to Los Angeles. The 24 year old actress approached Hollywood with naïve enthusiasm, and quickly learned that Latin actresses were, if at all, typecast as the mistress maid or local prostitute. By late 1992, Hayek had landed only bit parts. She appeared on “Street Justice” (1991), “The Sinbad Show” (1993), “Nurses” (1991), and as a sexy maid on the HBO series “Dream On” (1990). She also had one line in the Allison Anders film Mi vida loca (1993). Feeling under-appreciated by Anglo filmmakers, Hayek vented her frustrations on comedian Paul Rodriguez’s late-night Spanish-language talk show in 1992.
Robert Rodriguez and his producer wife Elizabeth Avellan happened to be watching and were immediately smitten with the intelligent, opinionated young woman. He soon gave her her big break–to star opposite Antonio Banderas in the now cult classic Desperado (1995), which put her