Salma Hayek was once an undocumented immigrant in the United States. Hayek who was born in 1966 is, by birth a Mexican, born in Vera Cruz, Mexico and the daughter of Spanish mother, an opera singer and Lebanese father, an oil executive.
On seeing the movie Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, in a local movie theater in Mexico, Salma decided to become an actress.
She was then sent to study in Louisiana, at the Academy of the Sacred Heart. It was when she was moved to Los Angeles to study acting, her visa expired and stayed in the US as an illegal immigrant. This happened in 1991. This leading actress immediately left for Mexico on realizing that her visa had expired and renewed her visa. Hence her immigration status was rectified quickly. She is now an American Citizen, though she was once considered a Hollywood racist.
Having arrived in Hollywood, she was first unknown. She then realized that she was doubtful about continuing her acting career in a foreign country as she had a very thick accent. She was told she would have no chance of becoming a leading star in Hollywood as there were major chances only for people speaking English. She then determined to improve her English to survive in the Hollywood. Salma is now proficient in English, Spanish, Arabic and Portuguese.
She had once endured the worst time in Hollywood, in terms of racial discrimination, due to her Mexican origin, when she first started the career in acting. It was out of the question to the US directors and producers that a Mexican woman could have a major part in the movies. At present Salma is one of Hollywood’s highest paid Latina actresses.
According to Salma, Hollywood has grown in recent times, in including the Latinos because the Latinos were not part of any story, previously. The US citizen Salma is now pleased with the changes that had taken place in Hollywood and is now an acclaimed actress, producer and a director. She also owns a production company named Ventanarosa.
She is privileged to be a part of the people who were a part of the changes. Jennifer Lopez and Ricky Martin are said to be the pathfinders. Salma hayek is now one of Hollywood’s most spectacular and influential Latina’s and is one of the few Latina’s to be nominated for the ‘Best Actress’ award of the Academy Awards for the role she played in the movie, ‘Frida’.
Hayek’s involved herself in charity projects related to women’s issues. Her support is extended in the promotion of awareness programs related to Violence Against Women and she is also against the discrimination against undocumented immigrants who are employed in the US. Salma cares a lot about the plight of the undocumented immigrants or workers and is now an active campaigner fighting for their rights and that of women. She continues to be one of the most diligent actresses in Hollywood.