Salma Hayek reveals she was once an illegal immigrant

Mexican actress also blasts Hollywood bosses

One Upon A Time In Mexico actress Salma Hayek has revealed that she was once an illegal immigrant in the US.

Hayek is the first Mexican national to be nominated for an Academy Award in the Best Actress category. She moved to Hollywood to study acting in 1991 then, after her visa expired, stayed in the country illegally.

She told the Spanish edition of V magazine: “I was an illegal immigrant in the United States. It was for a small period of time, but I still did it.”

The From Dusk ‘Til Dawn star’s visa situation was quickly fixed, however, according to Hayek‘s representative.


Hayek went on to blast Hollywood bosses for their attitudes during her early years as an actress.

“I had to endure the worst time of all in terms of racial discrimination in Hollywood when I first started out,” she said. “It was inconceivable to American directors and producers that a Mexican woman could have a lead role.”

Hayek received her Best Actress nomination in 2002 for her turn in Frida.