Salma Hayek was born on September 2, 1966 in Coatzacoalcos, Mexico. Her father is of Lebanese descent and her mother is of Mexican/Spanish ancestry. After having seen Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971) in a local movie theater, she decided she wanted to become an actress. At age 12, she was sent to the Academy of the Sacred Heart in New Orleans, Louisiana. After attending Mexico City's prestigious university Universidad Iberoamericana, she felt ready to pursue acting seriously.
She soon landed the title role in Teresa (1989), a hugely successful soap opera which earned her the star status in her native Mexico. However, anxious to make films and to explore her talent as well as passion, she left both Teresa (1989) and Mexico in 1991. Heartbroken fans spread rumors that she was having a secret affair with Mexico's president and left to escape his wife's wrath. She made her way to Los Angeles. She approached Hollywood with naive enthusiasm and quickly learned that Latina actresse