June 14th, 2010
03:28 PM ET
If there’s a downside to being known as one of the hottest women in Hollywood, it’s that your humor gets overlooked, Eva Mendes told W magazine in an interview.
“It’s very hard for me to be seen as funny, and the truth is, that’s where I’m most comfortable,” the 35-year-old actress said. “These are the two comments I get from people when they meet me… ‘You seem a lot taller on film,’ and ‘You’re funny.’ If people hang out with me, they see I’m a ham.”
But script selection is no joke to Mendes. Because she’s cast for her looks as much as her talent, she said she’s grown increasingly picky, choosing vehicles that will help her “stretch” as an actress.
“I know I walk a fine line between being a respected actor and being what they call a sex symbol,” Mendes said. “It’s a hard one to walk if you want to be known as a real, credible actor. But I’ve never felt objectified. Nothing you see me do is an accident. I might act like it’s an accident, but the opposite is true. I’m incredibly calculated when it comes to my career.”
And if those roles happen to include nudity – as did 2001’s “Training Day” with Denzel Washington – so be it.
“I’ve never had a problem with nudity, but I don’t put it out there without a reason. I’m not an exhibitionist. But, honestly, for my art I’ll do anything almost," she said. "I’ll go there.”
Yet, 12 years and 24 films later, Mendes is still searching for that movie that will secure her at the top of the A-list. Does she think her choices have been limited because of her ethnicity? Perhaps, she told the fashion magazine, but she chooses not to focus on that.
“I don’t consider myself a Latin American actress. I was born and raised here, and I have Cuban parents, but for me, I am the new American girl," Mendes said. "It’s not only Drew Barrymore and the blond Mid-western girl. This, [pointing to her face] is also what we look like now.”
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