Salma Hayek Had 1 Fear About Her Ajak Costume in Marvel’s ‘The Eternals’

Salma Hayek is part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. She’s Ajak in Marvel’s The Eternals. But the actor and producer had one initial concern about her character’s costume when she first signed on for the role. 

Salma Hayek describes Ajak as ‘the leader’ of the Eternals

Salma Hayek at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival
Salma Hayek at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival | Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Hayek may have been a little worried about her costume but she felt confident in bringing Ajak to the big screen.

“I like that [Ajak] is kind of the leader,” she said on a February 2021 episode of Variety’s podcast, Just for Variety. “She’s the only one that can talk to the Celestials. And I said, ‘I’ll get to be bossy on this one, too. I can play that.’ Giving instructions, telling people what to do, I can do that.” 

The Marvel movie tells the story of the Eternals, a race of immortal beings who shaped civilization on Earth. Directed by Chloé Zhao, The Eternals features a star-studded ensemble cast. Angelina Jolie (Thena), Crazy Rich Asians star Gemma Chan (Sersi), Kumail Nanjiani (Kingo), Game of Thrones alums Richard Madden (Ikaris) and Kit Harington (Dane Whitman), and Brian Tyree Henry (Phastos) are just a few of Hayek’s co-stars. 

Salma Hayek didn’t want to feel like she ‘couldn’t move’ in her costume

Hayek had one problem with the Ajak costume. Namely, how she’d feel with it on. Being in a restrictive costume worried her.  

“I was afraid of the outfit,” she said on the podcast. “I’m claustrophobic. I was very afraid that I was going to feel like I couldn’t move.” 

A long-sleeved bodysuit, the costume features gold detailing and an impressive headpiece. Not only did Hayek have concerns about Ajak’s outfit but Hayek didn’t get to read the script before signing on for the film. 

“They didn’t give me the script,” she said. “I had to sign the contract without reading the script. They wouldn’t let me see the script until I signed. That was very unsettling.”

Salma Hayek felt empowered when she tried on her ‘Eternals’ costume

Describing how she felt the first time she tried on her Ajak costume, Hayek said she didn’t feel like she couldn’t move. Instead, she felt powerful. 

“It was empowering. It really moved me,” she said. “They told me [early in Hayek’s career], ‘It’s never going to happen for you here.’ I am representing. It’s not because I’m putting on an outfit but we get the right to be superheroes today.”

Hayek continued, saying she’s proud to be 54 and in the MCU. 

“I’m also 54. So there was something really moving, not just for me, but for everything, all the different stereotypes,” she said. “She’s not sexy. You know what I’m saying? She’s not sexy at all. I’m very short. I’ve been bullied for being short my entire life. And suddenly, it doesn’t matter. You’re a superhero in the Marvel universe. It moved me.” 

Originally set to debut on Feb. 12, 2021, Disney pushed back the film’s release date to Nov. 5, 2021. In the meantime, Marvel fans can head to Disney+ to stream their favorite superhero movies.