Most little girls dress or brush the hair of their Barbie dolls, but as a child, Zoe Saldana sent hers on secret missions.
As reported byWomen’s Health Magazine, even back to her childhood days, Saldana preferred her women to be strong. “Growing up, my dolls were doctors and on secret missions,” she said. “I had ‘Barbie Goes Rambo.'”This preference extends even to how she outfits herself. “I don’t like things…that look fragile,” she said, preferring black stiletto boots to sandals. “I like to look strong and commanding.”
Working on Star Trek XI with a mostly male crew was no problem for Saldana. “I’m more of a guy’s girl,” she explained. “I like having a beer in a bar, and I don’t bicker or sit down and do my nails.”
Part of her strength was due to losing her father at a young age. After his death, her mother sent the ten-year-old Saldana to the Dominican Republic to be raised by relatives. “My mom was scared of losing us to the streets,” she explained. ” [But moving] made me stronger, because it takes a lot of courage to start over, especially when you’re a kid.”
Saldana adapted well, attending private school and studying ballet. There were benefits to living in the Caribbean. “It was beautiful. You could grab your surfboard and run to the beach in fifteen minutes.”
She returned to the U.S. at age seventeen and began to study acting in New York. Saldana soon had roles in movies alongside Johnny Depp and Ashton Kutcher. In Steven Spielberg‘s The Terminal, Zoe’s character was a Star Trek fan. Spielberg taught her the Vulcan salute. “Trekkies are everywhere,” she said.
The interview is in the May issue of Women’s Health. To subscribe to Women’s Health, head here.