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Salma Hayek responds to jabs that she married billionaire husband for his money

"Fifteen years together, and we are strong in love," she said of her relationship with Françcois-Henri Pinault.
/ Source: TODAY

Salma Hayek didn’t have to choose between love and money when it came to husband François-Henri Pinault.

In a new interview, the “Desperado” star shot down talk she married the billionaire French businessman because he’s wealthy.

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"You know, the thing is that in pictures, you cannot begin to guess the magic in him,” she told Dax Shepard and co-host Monica Padman on Monday’s episode of their “Armchair Expert” podcast. “And he's made me become a much better person, and grow in such a good, healthy way.

“And, you know, when I married him, everybody said, 'Oh, it's an arranged marriage, she married him for the money. I'm like, 'Yeah, whatever, b--.' Think what you want. Fifteen years together, and we are strong in love. And I don't even get offended. I'm like, 'Yeah, whatever.’”

Pinault, 58, is a billionaire who serves as CEO for the luxury good company Kering and president of the holding company Groupe Artémis. Hayek, 54, who stars in the new Amazon Prime movie “Bliss,” said there are stereotypes associated with wealthy men that don’t apply to her husband, even if she thought them herself, at first.

"There is a discrimination also to rich men,” she said. “Immediately you think because somebody's rich, (he) might not be a good person, might be somebody materialistic, might be somebody that doesn't have values, might be somebody that is even stupid or that doesn't deserve it or that they did it in order to have a lot of money, you did it the wrong way, there is all this preconceptions and I heard them, by the way.”

Hayek and Pinault, who are parents to daughter Valentina, 13, celebrated their 12th anniversary on Valentine’s Day. She says Pinault proved her wrong by being who he is.

“It was the last thing I wanted. It was not my type at all. And I came in with the preconceptions and he melted them all away," the Oscar nominated actor said, while noting that Pinault, who has three children from previous relationships, is not “controlling” or a “workaholic.”

"My guy finishes work, no matter how hard it was — and trust me, he has a lot of responsibilities — (with a) big smile on his face, happy to be home, happy to see me and the kids, make us laugh," she said.

"We go on vacation, he completely shuts off. He's in the moment. And so, it's not just an insult to me. I'm not the one being judged only. 'Oh, she's an actor, she's going for the money.' They cannot begin to imagine what a joy that human being is."