Salma Hayek Says It Was 'Empowering to Switch' Roles in 'Magic Mike 3' : I've Been 'the Stripper Before'

"It felt full-circle for me," the actress tells PEOPLE

salma hayek magic mike
Salma Hayek in Magic Mike's Last Dance (2023). Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures

Salma Hayek Pinault is happy to have someone else do the onscreen stripping for once.

In Magic Mike's Last Dance, the Oscar nominee plays a wealthy socialite assembling a cast of hunky dancers to create a steamy stage show, with help from "Magic" Mike himself, Channing Tatum — who performs a memorable lap dance for her character early in the film.

For Hayek Pinault, it's a role reversal that felt "full-circle" after portraying strippers in films like Americano and From Dusk Till Dawn, the latter of which she says "changed" her career back in 1996.

"It felt full-circle for me. And it was one of the attractions of the film, because I've had to be the stripper before. It was empowering to switch the roles," Hayek Pinault, 56, tells PEOPLE.

She adds of that lap dance scene with Tatum, 42, "It was very different, because I've danced in other movies before, but I've danced for a guy. [This time] it really felt like he was dancing for me. We wanted it to have an art that we were moving together. I was not sitting there having this guy dance — we connected and we were moving together."

Salma Hayek and Channing Tatum in the new Magic Mike movie
Channing Tatum and Salma Hayek in Magic Mike's Last Dance (2023). Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

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Aside from the change of pace with having the men do the dancing, the role also intrigued Hayek Pinault because of its relatable themes.

"I think a lot of women identify and relate with feeling undermined and feeling like you have things to do and say and just feel like you're not taken serious sometimes by your own family, or in her case, the husband and her friends," says the actress. "And [when] people kind of give up on you and you feel you have more potential but you're not in the right circumstances. And finding the power to go for it."

She adds, "I don't think there's a woman that has not had that problem in her life. And by the way — there's a lot of men too."

Salma Hayek attends the "Magic Mike's Last Dance" World Premiere
Alexander Tamargo/Getty Images

Will Hayek Pinault's "super cool" daughter Valentina, 15, watch Mom's "empowering" Magic Mike movie? Maybe one day, the actress says.

"I think Valentina in time will watch the movie if she wants to watch the movie. She's not going to avoid it because I'm in it, but I don't know if she will watch it because I'm in it," says Hayek Pinault. "When I said, 'Okay, they offered me this movie, should I do it?' she said, 'Listen, if you're going to do it, just make sure you don't do these three [dance] moves.' "

"She gave me instructions on the three moves and it was very funny," she recalls. "I said, 'Oh, don't worry, I don't really get to dance in this one.' She goes, 'Okay, then it's fine.' But, the guys were doing the three moves that she told me. Then I said, 'Wait a minute, did you watch [the other Magic Mike movies]?' and she said, 'No, but they have all the videos on YouTube, you can find them.' "

Magic Mike's Last Dance is in theaters Feb. 10.

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