Salma Hayek Opens Up About Still Feeling Trauma Caused By Sex Scene in 1995 Film

Salma Hayek -ptsd

Salma Hayek is no small name in Hollywood, in fact, not only Hollywood, the actress has global recognition and millions of fans. The actress has proved her worth over the years as she emerged as one of the finest actresses in Hollywood.

While the actress is known for super hits like Welcome to Hollywood, The Velocity of Gary, Anita, Sístole diástole, Carmelita, Breaking Up, Monica, Bliss, The Roads Not Taken, Drunk Parents & The Hummingbird Project. 

In a recent podcast interview, actress Salma Hayek mentioned suffering in the 1995 film Desperado while shooting the sex scene. The film was the second installment of his “Mexico Trilogy,” directed by Robert Rodriguez, which also includes the films El Mariachi and Once Upon a Time in Mexico, colloquially known as Desperado 2.

However, her major breakthrough was with the big-budget film Desperado (1995). The film set a strong foundation for her career but left her scared from the inside to this day. It was just the beginning of Salma Hayek’s career and the film demanded nudity and sex scenes, back then and in fact, even now there is no choice for women in Hollywood but to agree and continue with what the film demands.

Despite having a great cast and crew, it was the sex scene in that movie that bothered Hayek. Hayek opened up about her painful experience of shooting the scene in a recent interview on the Armchair Expert podcast with Dax Shepard and Monica Padman. She reveals that the love scene between Hayek and Banderas was not originally in the script, but was “demanded by the studio when they saw the chemistry” She notes that even though Banderas and Rodriguez were wonderful about the situation, she still found it unsettling.

The wife of Robert Rodriguez [the producer, Elizabeth Avellán], at the time, became my best friend. Robert Rodriguez, thank God, can also do everything on a film set… He can do the sound, he can operate the camera, and he was like my bro. So they closed the set and it was Robert, Elizabeth, Antonio, and I.

Hayek acknowledges that this was relatively okay, but because she didn’t have anything like that before, so when she began shooting, she “began to sob,” repeating “I don’t know if I can do this,” and “I’m afraid.” As part of what frightened her, she cited that it was Antonio’s free spirit.


He was an absolute gentleman and super nice and we’re still very close friends. But he was very free. So, it scared me that for him…it was like nothing. And that scared me because I’ve never been in front of someone like that in that situation. And I started crying and he’s like, “Oh my God, you’re making me feel terrible.” I was so embarrassed that I was crying.

In an interview, Hayek makes it clear, however, that “amazing” and “magnificent” were Banderas and Rodriguez and that none of them ever placed pressure on her. Hayek also revealed that because of her difficulty filming and because she could not remain in the scene, the scene was composed of some short cuts. Hayek admits that, even now, while watching it, she can’t enjoy that scene.


Hayek went on, saying,

They were great but I was not letting go of the towel.

Banderas, Rodriguez, and Avellán tried to make her laugh to get her to take it off, but she started crying again as soon as she did.

Although not new to the Hollywood world, more and more celebrities are opening up about their insecure traumatic encounters, abused or attacked on sets in the worst cases.


In order for Hollywood to change and adapt, it is important to listen to these stories. Hollywood has taken steps to ensure that experiences such as Hayek’s on the set of Desperado are not replicated by hiring intimacy coordinators and other on-set protection initiatives, so hopefully, the industry can continue to expand and adapt.

By recognizing that one of the reasons she couldn’t get into character to get through it is that she was worried about her father and brother, she also tackles the double expectations imposed on women.

She told them they couldn’t see the scene when the movie came out, and escorted them out of the theatre for the rest of it. She said they were extremely supportive, but she and Shepard reflected on the unequal expectations imposed on women in their lives to not only honor themselves but also protect the egos and reputations of men.

Mohid Moosani

Moosani is a night owl who is either binge watching his favorite shows or scribbling on his notebook writing short stories. Often showing up late at work and gulping down 6-7 cups of coffee is his usual practice.