‘Eternals’ star Salma Hayek was rejected for a coveted role in ‘The Matrix’.
Actors need to become resilient against incessant rejections which they are bound to face unless they are Leonardo DiCaprio. Bagging a leading role, especially in a film like ‘The Matrix’, is no easy feat, as recently revealed by Salma Hayek. The actress who is now starring in the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s ‘Eternals’ disclosed why she was rejected for one of the most awesome roles in ‘The Matrix’.
- Salma Hayek rejected from ‘The Matrix’
- Salma Hayek’s redemption with MCU
THE COVETED TRINITY
Trinity, played by Carie-Anne Moss in ‘The Matrix’ franchise, is one of the most iconic characters in the films. Her all-black leather outfit, black shades, along with her no-nonsense, audacious attitude and kickass agility has made her as iconic as Keanu Reeves’ Neo. It is hard to imagine any actress other than Carie-Anne Moss carry the character of Trinity. Yet four actresses were shortlisted to play this coveted role in ‘The Matrix’, including Salma Hayek.
In Jada Pinkett Smith’s Red Table Talk, a Facebook Watch series, Salma Hayek appeared as a guest and spilt all the beans about her audition for Trinity in ‘The Matrix’. She disclosed that Pinkett Smith was also her co-finalist to take on the role of Trinity and recalled their experience. She reminisced,
“We’d jumped through many hurdles, screen testing and many auditions. They brought these stunt coordinators from Asia. It was the physical test. I’m flexible and agile, but I’m lazy”.
Ultimately, it was Hayek’s laziness that cost her an amazing part in ‘The Matrix’. She had not been fond of hitting the gym, as is the trend these days. She further mentioned her experience,
“I never really went to the gym, they said, ‘You have to run!’ I go, ‘To where?’ I couldn’t even go around the room once. They never called me again after that day”.
Having experienced such a humiliating rejection due to her sluggish attitude as opposed to her counterparts, the actress elaborated her awe for her fellow auditioners, especially Pinkett Smith who, according to Hayek’s description, was fit, focused, disciplined, and gracious.
Jada’s performance during the audition was a wake-up call for Salma Hayek to start working on her physical strength as she looked up to Jada. Hayek mentioned, “Every time I’m going to do action, I say, ‘No, I better start getting some stamina and practice the routines. You’ve got to be like Jada!’”
The ‘Eternals’ actress has come a long way from losing a role in ‘The Matrix’ because of her laidback fitness to getting a role in a Marvel action film.
SALMA HAYEK’S REDEMPTION
After failing to become a part of ‘The Matrix’ franchise, Salma Hayek was able to turn her career around with films such as ‘Wild, Wild West’ and the Oscar-nominated ‘Frida’. The Mexican-American actress has also achieved her fitness redemption by landing a role in MCU’s ‘Eternals’. Marvel films are renowned for high-powered action sequences and strenuous physical requirements, therefore, Salma Hayek has risen to glory since her ‘The Matrix’ failure.
In ‘Eternals’, Hayek is set to play the role of Ajak, who is a man in the comics. Also known as the Lord of Flight, Ajak is a part of the Eternals, a “near-immortal” group of humanoids who are trusted to defend the Earth by alien Celestials. Ajak is sort of a spokesperson for the Celestials; he possesses immense healing powers, the ability to fly at the speed of sound as well as the projection of cosmic radiation from his body, besides several other conventional powers of Eternals.
In a conversation with USA Today, the Marvel star revealed how grateful she was to be accepted for a role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, being a Mexican woman of 54 years in age. Emotionally, filming Eternals was a demanding experience for her as she recalled,
“I teared up a little bit. But it was not about my dream to be a superhero. It was because it means so much to so many people that, to think that for a Mexican girl – a Mexican woman in her 50s – was able to be a superhero. I felt a lot of pride to have my superhero outfit on. It meant something”.
Under Oscar-winning director, Chloe Zhao’s guidance, Eternals and Salma Hayek’s dreams are in safe hands. Salma Hayek’s Ajak will hit the screen alongside many other wonderful Eternals on November 5 this year.
Do you think Salma Hayek will nail an action role in ‘Eternals’ and redeem herself from ‘The Matrix’ failure? Comment below!