Eiza González opens up about her crossover success and calls Salma Hayek a ‘trailblazer’

The actress said it was ‘shocking’ when she came to Hollywood

Eiza González is featured in V Magazine this month, and the Mexican actress’ spread is beautiful. The 32-year-old had an in-depth interview with the magazine where she opened up about many things, including her struggles and success crossing over into the Western market, praising Salma Hayek, calling her a “trailblazer.”

Eiza Gonzalez©V Magazine

González is one of the few Latina actresses with international crossover success. “Since I was really young, no one was really crossing over besides Salma [Hayek], and she did it way before I even started working. But I [was] always guided by passion,” she told the outlet.

González began studying acting at the M&M Studio in Mexico City at 14 years old and was cast as the lead female protagonist in Lola, érase una vez, when she was 16 and had great success in the Mexican market. She told V when she moved to the US after her last soap opera, it was “shocking.”

“By the time I moved to America, I just walked in and thought ‘Oh, those are just things that people say to make a point when they have power’, but it was a very different time,” she explained. The Ambulance star said she moved to the US in 2012 before the Me Too movement and Black Lives Matter started. “There wasn’t such an awakening of understanding [women and] minorities, so it was definitely tough throughout my career,” she said.

The singer went on to describe the uphill battle she had when it comes to feeling confident “taking up space.” “I’m getting to a place where I feel okay saying when something doesn’t feel right in my gut, or I don’t feel acknowledged or respected,” she continued.

After “pushing and pulling” the Baby Driver actress said she has nothing but respect for Hayek, who made her American dream come true against all odds. “That’s when I respect people like Salma Hayek because you think ‘Oh, you really were a trailblazer when there was nothing for you,’” she explained.

González also opened up about stereotypes of the Latin woman. “We’re probably one of the most stereotyped humans on planet Earth, and I think that it’s been really hard for us to deconstruct it and reeducate people,” she said.

Like González, Hayek’s career began in Mexico as a telenovela star in 1989. She soon established herself in Hollywood in films such as Desperado (1995) and Dusk till Dawn (1996) but was typecast, with many telling her she wasn’t good enough. She was also pursuing her dreams with Hollywood nightmares lurking in the not-so-dark shadows.

Salma Hayek At Frida Premiere©GettyImages
Salma (2002)

The film that cemented her as a talented and fierce actress was portraying Frida Kahlo in Frida (2002). In an op-ed for the New York Times, she described how Hollywood’s shame Harvey Weinstein tried to sabotage her after she rejected him. “For me, Frida was a political statement, a social statement, a feminist statement. It was my way of screaming. And Harvey used my way of screaming to repress me even more. So I could not let him win,” she wrote in the op-ed.

Thanks to actresses like Hayek, and González, the road for Latinas pursuing their dreams in Hollywood has become less bumpy, but it is far from clear.

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