Things You Might Not Know About Eva MendesPublished on February 22, 2017. Updated February 24, 2020
Eva Mendes has made a name for herself in Hollywood by starring in some of the hottest movies, having impeccable style and dating one of Hollywood’s hottest bachelors. The actress has a birthday coming up, so we have 9 things you didn’t know about gorgeous and talented Eva Mendes:
9. Aspiring Nun
Growing up, the actress wanted to be a nun – until she found out that they don’t get paid. “We didn’t grow up with a lot of money so I would always tell my mom, ‘Mommy I am going to buy you a big house when I grow up, and a car,’” she told BANG Showbiz. “And my sister said to me one day when I was ten, ‘How are you going to buy mom all these things? You are going to be a nun and nuns don’t get paid.’ I said, ‘What?’ and that was it, my convent dreams were over.”
8. Humble Beginnings
Eva de la Caridad Mendez was born in Miami, Florida, to Cuban parents. When she was 10, her parents divorced and her mother moved Eva, her two brothers (Juan Carlos and Carlo) and her sister (Janet) to the Los Angeles suburb, Glendale. Growing up, her family struggled financially. “I was raised by parents who didn’t have much. We didn’t use whole pieces of paper towel,” the actress told Marie Claire. “We shared, or used rags. Mom didn’t even want us flushing all the time.”
The Hitch star was discovered when a neighbor took pictures of her and showed them to a Hollywood casting agent. At the time, she was a marketing major at California State University in Northridge but dropped out after deciding that she wanted to pursue a career as an actress.
6. Budding Acting Career
Her first acting role was in the direct-to-video movie Children of the Corn V: Fields of Terror. She wasn’t happy with her performance though, so she hired an acting coach, Ivana Chubbuck. Her next role was in the movie A Night at the Roxbury, alongside Will Ferrell and Chris Kattan. Her breakthrough role, however, came when she landed a role in the crime thriller Training Day, which also starred Oscar-winning actor Denzel Washington.
From 2002 to 2010, the Cuban-American actress dated George Augusto. In 2011, she hooked up with Ryan Gosling after meeting on the set of The Place Beyond the Pines. Despite saying that she didn’t want children, Eva and Ryan welcomed their first child, daughter Esmeralda Amada, in 2014 and in 2016 they had a second daughter, Amada Lee.
In 2008, she entered Utah’s Cirque Lodge. Although there were rumors that the reason for her rehab stint was substance abuse issues, she has said that one of her biggest issues was coping with her own success. “Up until recently, I was really uncomfortable with having success and enjoying it,” she said. “I just couldn’t deal with that. How can I have so much? It’s not fair. How can the world have so little?…I allowed it to mess with me in the sense that I just didn’t know how to handle it.”
The Women actress is obsessed with self-improvement. She keeps a self-help book at her bedside at all times and sees a therapist once a week. She also practices transcendental meditation and believes in a “creator” as opposed to a “higher power” or “God.”
2. Music Videos
Before Mendes landed any film roles, she starred in a few music videos. In 1996, she starred in the Pet Shop Boys’ music video for “Se a vida é (That’s the Way Life Is)” and in 1997 was in Aerosmith’s music video for “Hole in My Soul.” In 1998, she was in Will Smith’s video for “Miami,” and in 2004, she was in The Strokes’ music video for “The End Has No End.”
The 2 Fast 2 Furious actress was bullied when she was a child. “I was a gawky, skinny girl with big teeth and that made me an easy target. I had two bullies and they tortured me all through junior high school. At the time I couldn’t understand why they kept taunting me. Only later could I see that I was showing them my fear and that’s what they were pouncing on. I’m sure those experiences explain why I’ve been so anxiety-ridden in my adult life,” she told The Daily Mail.