9:00am PT by Chris Gardner
Why Salma Hayek Spent Oscar Night in the Emergency Room
The emergency room at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center had some pretty fabulous drop-ins on Oscar night: Salma Hayek and her longtime manager, Evelyn O'Neill (of Management 360), turned up in their gowns and jewels after O'Neill tripped and broke her wrist at an Oscar party.
"The evening started off so well," veteran A-list manager O'Neill tells The Hollywood Reporter in a rare interview. "Salma was looking like a goddess — thanks to the inspired efforts of Jennifer Yepez and Mario Dedivanovic — and our brilliant costume designer on Little Women, Jacqueline Durran, who won a well-deserved Oscar. But in the midst of our girls' night out celebration, things abruptly took a turn for the worse. I heard the kind of bone-crunching sound you don’t ever want to hear and found my hand hanging off my arm at a grotesquely alarming angle."
Fortunately for O'Neill, she suffered the unfortunate injury while out with Hayek, who proved to be "a fiercely loving and protective friend" and helped O'Neill get to the nearest hospital. "Salma deftly navigated a dignified exit, whisked me away to the emergency room, and stayed by my side for three and half hours while they worked to straighten out my mangled wrist. It was such a painful and universally human way to spend the wee hours of Hollywood’s most glamorous night that we could only laugh," she continued. "By the time we left at sunrise, giddy with hunger ... all we wanted was a cheeseburger. Best breakfast ever!"
After burgers in broad daylight, O'Neill was left not with frustration for a night gone wrong but rather with immense gratitude for a client-turned-friend who never left her side. "If you know Salma at all, you know that she is a force of nature with an inextinguishable heart, but the love and care she showed for me personally that night is something I will never forget. She waved aside all arguments about my professional responsibility to her, her meetings and flight the next day, and the availability of anyone else — family members included — to come take her place," concluded O'Neill. "Not just in work but in life, we all want to believe that someone will be there when things go wrong and we end up in the ER at 3 a.m. that we won’t be alone. I am so blessed to know exactly who will be there — and that she will refuse to leave."
For her part, Hayek paid tribute on social media, thanking the doctors and staff at Cedars-Sinai for their "professionalism and kindness" while also giving a shout-out to O'Neill. "Evelyn, I’ve never seen anyone take so much pain with so much grace! You are a champ."
As the parties were just getting started my date, friend, and manager, Evelyn O’Neill had a little accident, and I had to rush her to the ER where we spent the rest of the Oscar night until the sun came up. Thank you to the doctors and the staff of Cedars-Sinai for your professionalism and kindness. And Evelyn, I’ve never seen anyone take so much pain with so much grace! You are a champ. #brave #champions Cuando las fiestas apenas comenzaban, mi acompañante, amiga y manager, Evelyn O'Neill, tuvo un pequeño accidente y tuve que llevarla a urgencias donde pasamos el resto de la noche de Los Oscars hasta que salió el sol. Gracias a los médicos y al personal del Centro Médico Cedars-Sinai por su profesionalismo y amabilidad. ¡Y Evelyn, nunca había visto a nadie soportar tanto dolor con tanta gracia! ¡Eres una campeona! #oscars @cedarssinai
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A version of this story first appeared in the Feb. 26 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.