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Salma Hayek on her Weinstein horror story: ‘Female artists have to go to war’

Charmaine Blake

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Salma Hayek

Image: Getty Images for ELLE

Salma Hayek, the star of the Miramax-produced Frida, broke her silence about the alleged abuses she suffered at the hands of Harvey Weinstein, a man she’s calling “her monster” in a devastatingly vivid New York Times article

Her story makes clear how male abuses of power in Hollywood aren’t actually just about sex, but also about gatekeeping prestige filmmaking from women — especially those of color.

According to her account, Weinstein warned her that “I will kill you, don’t think I can’t,” when Hayek denied his relentless sexual advances. But he didn’t stop there. She also claims that he demanded she add a lesbian sex scene — a clear attempt to humiliate and degrade her, undermining the artistry of her film while effectively sabotaging his own financial investment out of pure spite.

Hayek described Weinstein’s “brainwashing” that, even to this day, makes her doubt her value in the industry, and which kept her quiet — until now. “I felt that by now nobody would care about my pain — maybe this was an effect of the many times I was told, especially by Harvey, that I was nobody,” she wrote. Because, “In his eyes, I was not an artist. I wasn’t even a person. I was a thing: not a nobody, but a body.”

Having started as a Mexican telenovela star, working with Weinstein represented a chance at a big break in the United States, she says, and to express herself as an artist in the daring ways she dreamed of. 

She’d long identified with Frida Kahlo, and “it became my mission to portray the life of this extraordinary artist and to show my native Mexico in a way that combated stereotypes.”

But then the Weinstein reality hit. Hayek writes that at every opportunity, he tried to set her up for failure, constantly humiliating her during production, and disparaging her performance (which she later won an Oscar for). She remained defiant, insisting on staying true to Frida’s trademark unibrow. But, “he told me that the only thing I had going for me was my sex appeal,” and, because she wouldn’t comply to making the film “sexier,” that he wanted to shut down the film, “because no one would want to see me in that role.”

Still, Hayek persisted. Every other hurdle he put in her way as both an actress and producer on the film backfired. Except, that is, for one. She says Weinstein made it clear that he would only allow her to finish the movie if she agreed to full-frontal nudity in a sex scene with another woman.

Hayek’s description of that day on set is horrifying:

“My body began to shake uncontrollably, my breath was short and I began to cry and cry, unable to stop, as if I were throwing up tears,” she wrote. “My mind understood that I had to do it, but my body wouldn’t stop crying and convulsing. At that point, I started throwing up while a set frozen still waited to shoot. I had to take a tranquilizer, which eventually stopped the crying but made the vomiting worse. As you can imagine, this was not sexy, but it was the only way I could get through the scene.”

Hayek sharing her story marks yet another woman who bravely has come forward and shared the truth about their own experiences dealing with abusive behavior. 

Read Hayek’s full account over at The New York Times

Salma Hayek as Frida

Image: miramax

Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/12/13/salma-hayek-harvey-weinstein-frida-sex-scene/

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Ariana Grande’s ‘thank u, next’ video is a perfect parody of all your favorite teen movies

Charmaine Blake

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Ariana Grande’s “thank u, next” already cemented itself as a 2018 banger, and the official video is a party of its own. Full of classic teen movie tropes and references to Mean Girls, Bring It On, Legally Blonde, and more.

The movie references are fun on their own, all teased by Grande on social media leading up to the video’s release, but the cameos make “thank u, next.”

From Mean Girls‘ original Aaron Samuels (Jonathan Bennett) to Kris Jenner as a cool mom, everyone in the video is having a blast – perhaps none more so than Jennifer Coolidge recreating an entire scene of Legally Blonde with Grande as Elle Woods.

The song talks about Grande’s exes, but the second part is all about self-discovery (“But this one gon’ last / ‘Cause her name is Ari). The movie references are strategic – though they all contain central love stories, they remain iconic because they are stories of female empowerment and a protagonist finding her voice amid all the noise.

And that shit’s amazing.”

Read more: https://mashable.com/video/ariana-grande-thank-u-next/

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Michael B. Jordan demonstrates just how fast his hands are

Charmaine Blake

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“Having starred in two Creed movies and probably endured some pretty rigorous physical training, Michael B. Jordan is pretty quick on his feet — and fast with his hands.

On The Late Late Show, Jordan demonstrated to host James Corden just how quick he can actually move them.

In a game of good old try-to-slap-my-hand-before-I-move-it-away, Jordan beat a shrieking James Corden pretty convincingly.

Oh, Michael. Your hands are faster than the speed of our love for you.”

Read more: https://mashable.com/video/michael-b-jordan-james-corden-fast-hands/

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Idris Elba is People’s ‘Sexiest Man Alive’ for 2018

Charmaine Blake

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(CNN)He’s still not James Bond, but for now this honor will do.

He is the 33rd man to hold the title and appears this week on the magazine’s cover.
Elba told the publication, “I was like, ‘Come on, no way. Really?’ ” when he first learned he had been selected.
“Looked in the mirror, I checked myself out. I was like, ‘Yeah, you are kind of sexy today,’ ” the “Thor” star joked. “But to be honest, it was just a nice feeling. It was a nice surprise — an ego boost for sure.”
“Elba first became famous in the States for his portrayal of drug kingpin Russell “Stringer” Bell on HBO’s hit series “The Wire” (HBO is owned by CNN’s parent company) and since then has branched out to the big screen.
His early days were far from sexy, Elba said, growing up “tall and skinny” at an all-boys school in London, where he played football, basketball, cricket, hockey and rugby.
Now considered one of Hollywood’s sex symbols, Elba said he definitely had an awkward stage as a youth.
“And my name was Idrissa Akuna Elba, OK?,” he said. “I got picked on a little bit. But as soon as I could grow a mustache, I was the coolest kid on the block. Grew a mustache, had some muscles, bonkers.”
Bonkers indeed.”

Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/06/entertainment/idris-elba-sexiest-man-alive/index.html

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