In a new interview, Salma Hayek described her battle with COVID-19, which she kept secret until now, and how the virus nearly took her life
Salma Hayek may be back at work on her first movie since before the pandemic. But as she gets ready for the release of her new film House of Gucci, she’s also revealing why she took so long to go back to work, when many actors returned to movie sets last summer and fall: She contracted COVID in the early days of the pandemic, and has been battling symptoms of what doctors call “long COVID” for the better part of the last year.
In a Zoom interview with Variety, Hayek opened up about her illness, which she had kept secret until now.
“My doctor begged me to go to the hospital because it was so bad,” the 54-year-old actor said. “I said, ‘No, thank you. I’d rather die at home.'”
Instead of going to a hospital, Hayek quarantined in one room of the London home she shares with her husband and 13-year-old daughter. Eventually, she said, she spent seven weeks in that room. At one point, she was put on oxygen. And now, nearly a year later, she said she still isn’t her pre-pandemic self. She struggles with fatigue and says she just doesn’t have the same amount of energy she did before she got sick.
However, she explained, that’s what made House of Gucci the perfect first movie for her to work on after her illness.
“It was not a lot of time,” Hayek said. “It was easy. It was the perfect job to just get back into it. I had started doing Zooms at one point, but I could only do so many because I would get so tired.”
Hayek is far from the only celebrity to contract COVID-19 in the last year, and she’s not even the only celebrity to get dangerously sick. Pink just revealed recently that while she struggled with the virus, she rewrote her will because she thought she might die. We all remember the earliest days of the pandemic, when Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson got sick. And since then, celebrities like Colton Underwood, Ellen DeGeneres, JoJo Siwa, Hugh Grant, Ben Platt, Donald Trump, and other famous faces have announced their battles with the disease.
We hope Hayek eventually makes a full recovery, and that people continue to get vaccinated so no one else has to experience this illness like she did.