Praised for her work in Spanish-language films, Cruz is often given roles in U.S movies that trade on her beauty instead of showcasing her acting ability. She dated Cruise, who is now engaged to actress Katie Holmes, for several years after his marriage to Nicole Kidman ended.
"I think her relationship with Tom Cruise made the press look at her with bad eyes," Almodovar told reporters via translator, while promoting his new Cruz film, "Volver." Not only the American press, but also the Spanish press really saw her as an opportunist ... and she was not," Almodovar said.
"It really played out as this drama where the victim was Nicole Kidman who got all the greatest roles available and Penelope was really seen as the other woman. So, that was very bad also for her image. Now, with ('Volver,') she demonstrates that she can be a very good actress."
Cruz said she couldn't comment on Almodovar's remarks about Cruise because she didn't hear them herself, but added, "(I am so) loyal to the people who have been good to me and he is one of them."
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]