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Salma Hayek says keeping 'Eternals' role secret was 'torturous'

Salma Hayek discussed her role as Ajak in the upcoming Marvel film Eternals on Late Night with Seth Meyers. File Photo by Christine Chew/UPI
Salma Hayek discussed her role as Ajak in the upcoming Marvel film "Eternals" on "Late Night with Seth Meyers." File Photo by Christine Chew/UPI | License Photo

June 22 (UPI) -- Salma Hayek says keeping her Eternals role secret was a "torturous" experience.

The 54-year-old actress discussed her role as Ajak in the upcoming Marvel film during Monday's episode of Late Night with Seth Meyers.

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Hayek said she was "super excited" to join the film, which is directed by ChloƩ Zhao. Zhao won Best Director at the Oscars this year for her film Nomadland.

"I was super excited, especially because I was already fond of ChloƩ. Now she's one of the few Oscar winner female directors," Hayek said. "But even then I was a superfan, and it was super exciting also to do a Marvel film."

Hayek said, however, that she wasn't allowed to read the script before signing on to the film.

"You have to sign the contract without reading the script. It was really strange," she said. "I did it. I did it. I was nervous. But I trusted her."

In addition, Hayek said it was difficult to keep the role a secret.

"You're like, 'Yes, oh my God, I got a Marvel!' Like, what are the odds, right, at my age? But you cannot tell anybody," she said. "And I was one of the first ones [cast]. You cannot tell your mother. You cannot tell your father. Because let me tell you, they cannot hold a secret. You cannot tell your kids. It was torturous."

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Hayek said Zhao intrigued her by saying Ajak is the leader of the Eternals, a race of long-lived humans with superpowers.

"'It's an Eternal. And the Eternals have a mission on Earth. And out of the Eternals, you're the only one that talks to the Celestials, and so you're in charge,'" she said.

Hayek previously said on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon that she was "shocked" to land the role.

Marvel released a first teaser trailer for Eternals in May featuring Hayek, Gemma Chan, Richard Madden, Barry Keoghan and Angelina Jolie.

Eternals opens in theaters Nov. 5.

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