Why Hollywood won't cast Eva Mendes anymore

Despite her gorgeous looks and critical acclaim, Eva Mendes hasn't really started in a buzz worthy movie since 2012's The Place Beyond the Pines. How could someone as beautiful and talented have fallen off of Hollywood's radar? As it turns out, it might have been on her own accord.

Here are just some of the reasons Hollywood won't cast Eva Mendes anymore.

She prefers a traditional role in her family

For one thing, Mendes has been busy raising the two daughters she has with partner Ryan Gosling: Esmeralda Amada and Amada Lee, born in 2014 and 2016, respectively. "I'm a very hands-on mom; I don't have a nanny. No matter how tired I am, I just do it," she told InStyle magazine (via Daily Mail).

Perhaps unsurprisingly, becoming a mother has made Mendes worry less about glamorous dresses and more on, you know, the important stuff. "If I'm even like, 'Oh, what should I wear? Or, should I do this project? All I have to think about is my daughter and her face, and I know the answer immediately," she said on the Today show (via Us Weekly) in 2016. "[Esmeralda is] my moral compass in a way."

Mendes' maternal sacrifice was highlighted in January 2017 when Gosling accepted the Golden Globe for his performance in La La Land. "If she hadn't have taken all that on so that I could have this experience, there would surely be someone else up here other than me today," Gosling told the crowd (via Fortune). "So, sweetheart, thank you."

She had a string of non-profitable movies

Hollywood is a fickle place, and at the end of the day, it's success at the box office that really does the talking. Mendes hasn't had the best track record with her films of late, and that can put a damper on anyone's career.

According to Box Office Mojo, The Place Beyond the Pines might have changed Mendes's personal life, but it just didn't get people going to the theaters. With a production budget of $15 million, it grossed a pretty sad domestic product, bringing in just above $21 million. It was a step up from her earlier remake of Bad Lieutenant, which also starred Nicolas Cage. With a budget of $25 million, its domestic gross of just over $1.7 million was nothing short of heartbreaking. And that was in the face of some glowing reviews, like one from Collider that suggested this was one remake that was not only spot-on, but called the film's performances nothing less than great.

Girl in Progress was Mendes's 2012 attempt at taking on some serious family matters, exploring the damage that can be done by a parent who's too wrapped up in their own crisis-filled life to pay attention to their child's struggles. "I was attracted to the fact that the character was such a mess of a woman and such a disaster of a mother, but really, truly trying her best," she told Collider. "I wanted to play a really flawed, real human being, and I knew, within the first few pages of the script, that she was just that." Audiences didn't think that's what they wanted to see, though, and the movie finished with a $2.6 million domestic gross after just 6 weeks in theaters.

Her 2015 collaboration with Gosling, Lost River, was even more dismal, grossing only $45,431 after being released in only three theaters for a 21-day run. Money talks in Hollywood, and that might also have something to do with why Mendes's preferred roles are fewer and fewer.

She wants to get away from her glamorous image

Mendes sat down with The Guardian in 2013 for a chat not only about where her career had been but where it was going next. According to her, she was trying to get away from the image that had made her famous. She didn't want to be the glamor girl anymore, and wanted to find deeper, different roles that were going to be more challenging — and more meaningful — going forward.

"I just made a decision," she told them. "When it comes to being an actress I actually really love coming from a very raw place. Any opportunity I get not to wear makeup on set, I take. I really don't care about looking beautiful in a film unless I have to for the character. I don't check the playback, I don't even know anything about lighting. I love anything that gets me closer to the role. So I needed to turn down those things that could possibly pigeonhole me."

She was vague on whether or not that meant she had actively been turning down roles that just didn't suit her new determination, but she did mention that there were several directors — like David Lynch — that she was trying to pursue a working relationship with. She also said that she was doing less and less of the typical advertising roles she had been becoming known for, and the interview was, in hindsight, at a turning point in her career. It was promoting The Place Beyond the Pines, the movie that would see her taking on the role of a working class single mom, and a role that would introduce her to Ryan Gosling. Unfortunately, breaking free of typecasting within a particular image can be incredibly difficult to do, and turning down roles that were what made you famous means that you're bound to fall off Hollywood's radar a bit.

She's extremely private

It goes without saying that Eva Mendes fights for as much privacy as she can get. Just look at her 2008 trip to rehab, which was rumored to be for cocaine abuse but which her rep claimed was actually for "personal issues." Mendes never spoke about what happened on the record.

Beyond that, Mendes appears to be especially private in her personal life, often reaching Beyonce and Jay Z-level territories. In fact, E! News pointed out that, as of March 2017, she and Ryan Gosling have only made two red carpet appearances together. "What people don't know about me is that I love being home," Mendes, who did not attend any of Gosling's award-show appearances in 2017, told Shape magazine.

Privacy is something she and Gosling crave for their two daughters, whose births were practically hidden from the press. "Whether we like it or not, privacy is going to be very difficult for Esmeralda. I think it's unfair but that's our reality," Mendes said in an interview with Violet Grey. "So Ryan and I decided early on to give her as much privacy as we could. And my pregnancy was the first opportunity to give her that."

Even Mendes' social media accounts are very business-oriented, with little to no sign of Gosling or her daughters. She took her first selfie ever in 2015, which was posted less for "likes" and more for a good cause. "This is my first selfie and it's for an amazing cause! Thank you all so much for helping support Andrew Wilson and his family," Mendes wrote, referring to a boy who had cancer.

Hiding from the spotlight?! Well, that's definitely one way to get the studios to stop calling you.

She's at a transitional age

Like so many actresses before her, Mendes, now 43, has reached a transitional point in her career. Although she looks as beautiful as ever (seriously, here's the proof), she's at a point in her life and career where she's not longer being offered the young, sexy roles that originally made her a star.

Not that she likely cares. In fact, in recent interviews, Mendes seems totally at home with her new role as a mature and nurturing mother. "I'm, you know, breastfeeding," she told Ellen DeGeneres in 2014 (via US Weekly). "I've always heard it. It really does help to shrink your uterus back to normal size. It does! I know it's a really weird thing to say, but it does. It's the best. So it's breastfeeding is really helping and then obviously you want to be healthy for the baby because she's eating kind of what I'm eating, so you want to make good choices."

She also seems pretty content with no longer posing for sexy,half-naked ads. "I'm in no rush to go back to my size," she told E! News. "I'm having a good 'ol time taking advantage of the post-pregnancy thing. As long as I fit in it and feel alright and it doesn't have baby vomit, I think I'm pretty good." Hey, fair enough.

She's busy giving back

Mendes has done her fair share of charity work over the years. In 2012, she visited Sierra Leone as part of the series Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, which raises awareness about issues affecting females worldwide. While on location, she met with a survivor of gender-based violence, Amie Kandeh, who works with the International Rescue Committee.

"This experience has profoundly affected me," Mendes told People. "I was so shocked and saddened to learn the extent of gender-based violence taking place in Sierra Leone every day and that trip has made me want to be a part of the solution."

She also volunteers for the organization The Art of Elysium, which allows musicians, artists and actors to share their talents with very sick children.

Mendes told CNN, "These children, they're just these beautiful little souls. Some of these kids can't speak, so they really just have their eyes and their souls to communicate. And when you finger-paint with a kid or you dance and you see their little eyes light up, it's pretty incredible. And when you start visiting them on a regular basis, you see their growth. It's really quite special."

It sounds like Mendes really enjoys the charity work she does—might she be realizing a true passion as a humanitarian?

She's been dealing with personal tragedies

Although she's rich, beautiful and dating the equally rich and beautiful Ryan Gosling, Eva Mendes' life has been filled with as many tragic twists and turns like the rest of us. Case in point: the 2016 death of her brother, Carlos, who lost his battle with cancer just 12 days after Amada was born.

"We had a funeral service for him and that same week I had the baby," Mendes recalled to Latina magazine. "It was really, really intense and obviously beyond heartbreaking, but also kind of beautiful."

Gosling spoke of Mendes struggle during his speech at the 2017 Golden Globes. "While I was singing, and dancing and playing piano and having one of the best experiences I've ever had on a film [on La La Land], my lady was raising our daughter, pregnant with our second and trying to help her brother fight his battle with cancer."

She's been busy as an international spokesperson

Mendes might be most famous for her acting work, but there's another side of her that's almost the complete opposite. While she's spent countless hours portraying someone else, she's also been busy embracing being none other than Eva Mendes in her roles as a celebrity spokesperson for an impressive list of international companies.

In 2015, she teamed with with Estee Lauder to help promote their New Dimension Transformative Skincare collection, and according to what she told the Miami Herald, the message behind the cosmetics line was right in sync with the changes she was seeing in the mirror every day. "It's beautiful, really, and better than the alternative, I tell ya!" she said in reference to the aging process. "For me, it's going with the changes. A lot of them are positive as you get older. It's about concentrating on those positive changes and finding the right products to help transform you."

That's just one in a long line of products that she's given her image and endorsement to. In 2011, she became the image of Thierry Mugler's Angel perfume. Meanwhile, Aspirational compiled an ever-growing list of partnerships that counted Revlon, Magnum (ice cream), Cocio (chocolate milk), Calvin Klein, Reebok, Campari (aperitif), Pantene (shampoo) and Morgan and Peek & Cloppenburg (clothes) among those that had their brand identity strengthened with an endorsement from Mendes.

In 2013, she switched up her look entirely when she became the face of Vogue Eyewear.

She's decided to focus on her clothing line and beauty brand

Here's a fun fact you might not already know: Mendes designs her own clothing line at New York and Company and directs a beauty line called CIRCA. According to Glamour, Mendes has worked on her clothing line since 2013.

She told People that the clothing line averages a new collection every six weeks. "We're just constantly making adjustments and really paying attention to what the customer wants," Mendes added.

CIRCA is all about affordability; Elle reports the prices of the line are $7 to $15. "Growing up, I was from a very lower-middle class family, and I really got all my makeup and products from drugstores, but the quality of the products just wasn't there." Mendes said at CIRCA'S launch at a Manhattan Duane Reade.

Like Jessica Simpson and Jessica Alba before her, these days, Mendes appears to be repositioning herself as a legitimate business mogul in Hollywood. To which we say: awesome.

She tried to launch her own home goods line

Of course, not all of Mendes' business ventures have been a success. Case in point: her 2009 endeavor to launch a home decor line with Macy's. Vida by Eva Mendes was a Latin-inspired decor brand founded around five different "flavors," including a vibrant floral pattern called Jayde and and gold-and-embroidery pattern called Rosa.

"Vida is about easy luxury," Mendes said in a press release (via MTV)."The colors, fabrics, and textures that I live and love, brought to life in a stylish, comfortable, and affordable way. I'm excited to partner to see my passion for design come to life." Her partner in the endeavor was George Augusto, a now-former flame whose name was tacked onto the project without it being entirely clear just what sort of input he had in the line.

Vida is no longer available through Macy's, but a run-down of merchandise and a price list still available on Business Wire suggests what might have been the downfall of the line. Even though Mendes marketed the line as comfortable and affordable, $130 for a set of sheets and bedding sets that lingered around the $500 mark just aren't in the budget for many.

How she can turn it around

If Mendes starts landing movie roles again, it will most likely be the result of her wanting to give up her private life for a really good role. Luckily for her, she probably won't have too much of a problem finding success; her resume already includes a string of box office hits, including Hitch, The Other Guys and Ghost Rider.

From there, she might want to consider biting the bullet and creating more of a presence on social media. Take her Twitter account, for example, which boasts 162,000 followers, even though Mendes has yet to post a single tweet. Imagine how many more she'd gain if she wrote 140 characters or less.

Of course, Mendes has found the one thing better than fame, fortune and awards waiting for her at home: Ryan Gosling. So, if she ultimately decides to choose a night at home with him over wearing a Givenchy dress to the Academy Awards, we can't really say we blame her.

 

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