Salma Hayek: Angelina Jolie ‘is the best director I’ve ever worked with’

This week has been sad-yet-cathartic for all of Angelina Jolie fans. I’ve been a Jolie stan since the late 1990s, and to see my girl deal in silence with all of the bullsh-t Brad Pitt has thrown at her has been a lot. At least the plane story is finally getting out there and hopefully, people will start to see Brad as who he really is: a toxic, abusive piece of sh-t.

Anyway, all of the Jolie stans deserve a nice story. Remember how Angelina and Salma Hayek became super-tight on The Eternals? Suddenly, they were hanging out and Salma was talking her up in interviews, and they were put together for some of the Eternals’ promo and they seemed like they had a lovely time. Well, Angelina cast Salma in Without Blood, Jolie’s latest directorial effort, and they recently wrapped filming. Salma chatted about the experience with Deadline and we really need to make room for Salma in the Jolie-stan universe.

Salma Hayek Pinault is singing her friend Angelina Jolie‘s praises as a writer and director following the conclusion of production on the film Without Blood. The film, an adaptation of the best-selling novel by Alessandro Baricco of the same name, is the second collaboration between Hayek Pinault and Jolie who recently co-starred in Marvel’s Eternals from director Chloe Zhao. (Hayek Pinault remained mum regarding whether she would be returning for the rumored sequel.)

“We just finished it,” Hayek Pinault told Deadline. “Angelina is the best director I’ve ever worked with. I absolutely loved working with her; enjoyed every second of it. It’s a tough piece but it was so delicious to come to work every single day. She is a genius and I think this might be her best movie yet. She did an amazing job, really.”

She continued, “I was completely blown away by her mind, her dedication, her technical knowledge, and her control of every aspect, as well as her vision which is so clear. She is so good with the actors, so passionate, and so focused. But most of all, I was blown away by her kindness to every single person on the set. I talked about this with my co-star Demián Bichir and we were saying, ‘Wow, she’s really something.’”

Without Blood is a fable set in the aftermath of an unidentified conflict in a farmhouse deep in the Italian countryside. It serves as Jolie’s debut film for Fremantle as part of her recently announced three-year deal.

[From Deadline]

Salma is so funny! “She’s the best director I’ve EVER worked with!” I love Angelina and I think she’s an okay director in general, and it’s okay to say that she’s still figuring out her directorial vision. Jolie’s weakness as a director (imo) is story and pacing – in the technical aspects of filmmaking, she is very good, but she needs a lot of help with plotting and pacing. Still, I love how much affection Salma has for her. I love that Jolie cast Hayek and Bechir together. That’s amazing.

This week, Jolie also gave some exclusive behind-the-scenes photos from Without Blood to People Magazine. She also confirmed that both Maddox and Pax worked in the assistant director department while they were shooting in Italy. You can see the photos below, on People’s IG.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Cover Images, Salma’s Instagram, People’s IG.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

25 Responses to “Salma Hayek: Angelina Jolie ‘is the best director I’ve ever worked with’”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. MerlinsMom1018 says:

    My girl looking at Pax like…”yeah. I did good!!!!”

  2. K8erade says:

    I’m glad there’s people going to bat for Angelina after this week and all that’s been exposed. That said, I’m not a huge fan of Angelina Jolie’s films that she directs. I just can’t get into them as easily as others.

    • @ K8erade, as with any movie their will alaways be directors that you won’t enjoy so it’s understandable.

      I too love those that are speaking out for Angelina as the pit bulls that Pitt the Indefensible has been spewing this week. I do adore Hayek as I have loved her since her earliest movies, especially Desperado. I also love her compassion for AJ as well! It’s wonderful that we actual people speaking out for AJ but for Pitt it’s “sources” aka Pitt himself.

      Maybe if Pitt had been a man of character and not a piece of shit by behaving as an emotionally and physically abusive man he wouldn’t be facing the facts that AJ has been exposing. He has no one to blame but himself. He can STFU and sit down.

      Luckily AJ, and the kids were able to escape his abusive ass and seem to be well on their way to all of the happiness they deserve but especially happiness for Angelina as she certainly deserves all of it!!

  3. SAS says:

    Omg Pax looks so freaking cute lugging that camera! Her kids have been coming out for her in all her projects recently and I think it’s really sweet and shows how close they are as a family.

    I feel like this is the same kind of nepotism as Malia Obama’s industry work, yea it’s there, but the kids are obviously very bright and hard workers so I somehow don’t begrudge it as much. Maybe I’m a hypocrite but like Kaiser, I’ve got a huge soft spot for Jolie and always have.

    • Wilma says:

      I always have less of a problem with behind the scenes jobs somehow. Acting talent is so rare and there are so many struggling young actors that getting large acting jobs always feel more shitty.

    • Jaded says:

      Absolutely. Compare them to Brooklyn Beckham who is the cover boy for family nepotism. No education to speak of, no career other than a few weak stabs at photography, modeling and cooking.

    • Snoozer says:

      Nepotism happens; but there are definitely different levels of it.

      This feels like a quieter nepotism where the boys were employed because of their parent; but it was essentially a paid internship in more junior roles and they worked hard and learned a lot.

      Whereas, on a very different level, Brooklyn Beckham dropped out of photography school, took some terrible photos and got a book deal and huge fashion campaigns without putting in any of the work.

      Therein lies the difference!

      PS: there’s a truly hilarious takedown of Brooklyn and his half-arsed efforts at various professions in The Guardian, well worth a read!

  4. Mireille says:

    For my job, I write and direct short video campaigns for my company — with actors, staging, the whole production. 2-3 days of hectic shooting for 5 minutes of video. The work that goes into doing that is exhaustive and draining. You are literally trying to piece together images to tell a story and relay an overall message. I can’t imagine for any director having to be responsible for 90 minutes or 2-3 hours worth of film. I bristle every time my boss wants me to create another video campaign. I’m pretty sure Angelina enjoys it — I don’t. I think she is growing as a director and I’m happy that considering every thing she’s gone through, especially with toxic Hollywood, she still loves film work. Only want the best for her and her family.

    Also, I’ve seen a lot of nasty comments about Angie on various sites like Yahoo since the story broke about The Plane Incident with Pathetic Brad. But on Twitter, I’ve seen a lot pro-Angie comments. That makes me feel a little heartened about humanity in general.

    • SAS says:

      @Mireille, when the whole-of-internet avalanche of anti-Heard comments and social media activity stopped so abruptly after the trial, I definitely now believe that these people are buying bot traffic as part of their PR. Pitt is using the exact same playbook and I’m terrified for Jolie but can only hold out hope like you.

      • Coco says:


        They are definitely buying bots 100% fact. It’s a play book as old as time and people like Woody Allen have been doing it for years.

    • Suze says:

      I used to work in video production, and you are not wrong. So much work on the back end, hectic days of shooting, and as you say – a 5 minute video as the result. I enjoyed it, and I’m proud of the work I did, but it is not for the faint of heart! I can’t even imagine the work that goes into a full on movie production.

      But I love that Maddox and Pax are getting hands-on experience, there’s no better teacher.

  5. Lady D says:

    She is ethereally gorgeous.

  6. teecee says:

    I like Angie a lot but she’s not even a good director, much less a great one. It’s compliments like these – ones that are so clearly false and butt kissy – which irritate. You can say she’s dedicated and passionate without insulting the actually talented directors who got the job through ability, not fame.

    (I don’t think she’s a talented director. That’s not a knock on her character, which is sterling, but I don’t believe in pretending every good person is talented, or vice versa – that every talented person is good.)

    • Adorable says:

      Well that’s the beauty of being individuals,we’re all different…If we all thought the same,the world would be boring AF….I’m a fan & I thought her first four films were meh,But “FTKMF”was brilliant…She’s still pretty new at it & she can only grow.

    • SophieJara says:

      I don’t think the comment has to be a lie. Our experience of the director is the finished product, Selma’s experience is hundreds of hours on set. You could absolutely adore making art with someone even if the finished art product is not world class.

    • Snoozer says:

      I think this is Salma’s perspective that, as an actor on set, AJ is perhaps her favourite director to work with. That’s a different definition of ‘greatest director’ than judging by the output we see in the end.

      I’m sure Salma is aware that other directors she’s worked with produce higher quality films; but that doesn’t mean the filming experience was as enjoyable for her.

      Considering how much that profession is dominated by huge, male egos, I can imagine that working with an intelligent, kind and empathetic woman who is very focused on the actors as director is a breath of fresh air.

      Chloe Zao could probably be filed the same way; but Marvel films are a very different kettle of fish to small independent films.

  7. whatWHAT? says:

    maybe the “best” part is because not only she good at it, but she also treats the actors with respect, like people not cattle, and listens to them.

  8. Lisa says:

    I suspect by best here she means what it was like to work with her every day. it sounds like a very positive work environment.

  9. The Voice says:

    I’ve loved Angelina Jolie since the 90s but I don’t think the movies she’s directed are very good. They’re heavy subjects but done in a way that hammer you on the head.

    I can see how Salma can rave about AJ being an amazing director. She probably gave Salma the room and direction to turn in a great performance. Great director for actors but maybe not for the overall movie. As others have said above, her movies could use some help with the pacing and maybe even tone.

  10. AC says:

    I like her movies because usually, they’re about what’s happened in history. I am glad to see AJ and Salma’s friendship!

  11. K says:

    She is blooming. He is decaying. Bye Brad.

  12. Kirsten says:

    She may be delightful to work for, but she makes terrible movies.

  13. Facts says:

    Most of Angie’s movies are about war and the effects of war. Her interest and passion. They are not for everyone. That doesn’t make her a terrible director. It actually makes her strategic and smart.
    I don’t like rom coms and think they are silly to watch but I don’t blame the directors.

    • Jo says:

      You’re presuming a lot of things here. That people are silly enough to confuse not liking War films with not liking AJ films, for instance.
      Why don’t you say why you like AJ films in particular rather than as a general « they’re about war »?

  14. Bree says:

    Salma’s “best director” comment is about the filming of the movie.

    Jolie thinks too highly of the audience and thinks they they can always handle purposeful slowness. FTKMF was great though and she’s got the same editor for this one.