Zoe Saldana's Rising Star

Actress Zoe Saldana, 31, wants you to know three things about her. 1) She's a leader, not a follower 2) She works very hard at her craft. And 3) She was "not born to follow or cater to a man." Got that? Good. The Queens, N.Y.-bred dominicana sat down with Latina contributor Damarys Ocaña for the June/July cover story to discuss her distaste for the Hollywood scene, her upbringing in a house full of strong women, and why she's not ashamed to admit she wants an Oscar, coño! Read on for the juicy highlights.

ON HER OWN SEXY CONFIDENCE: "Look at me. I'm skinny, I have a big nose, no tits and no ass, but in a room full of beautiful women, I would still leave with the most gorgeous guy." 

ON SHOOTING STEAMY SEX SCENES WITH STAR TREK CO-STAR CHRIS PINE: “There’s nothing sexual about shooting a sex scene, you must know!” she says. “You are sweating your ass off under the lights, or you’re freezing. You’re hungry, or you’re bloated and gassy because they had pizza on the set that day.”

ON HER DREAMS OF WINNING AN OSCAR: "You know that cover that Kate Winslet did for Vanity Fair recently, where she said, ‘You bet your ass I want that Oscar’?” Saldana asks. “Well, it’s the same with me. I’m not going to be like, ‘I just want to be known for my work.’ No, I want that golden statue on my shelf. Whether it happens or not, it will not determine the kind of substance that I feel I contributed. But I want it... Shoot for the stars and I’ll settle for a cloud.”

ON AVOIDING A HOLLYWOOD EGO: "You’ll never see me shopping on Robertson Boulevard or hanging out in super-public spaces like that. I’m fiercely territorial about my privacy. And I cannot follow a crowd,” she says. “I never want to get to the point where I’m walking a red carpet thinking, ‘I’m fabulous.’ At times, Hollywood is going to get the best of you, and you will wake up feeling overconfident. But I have too many people that keep me in check if I fail to do so myself.”

ON WANTING TO BE LIKE SALMA HAYEK: “All you see is Salma and a sea of ties, and she’s leading,” she says. “A woman who is in control, who commands the ship and knows what she’s doing, is what I want to be.”

ON HER VERSION OF A FUN STATURDAY NIGHT: “We just get together in my house or at a friend’s house,” she says, “and it’s about finding the most expensive bottles of wine and having the most exquisite conversations till 3 o’clock in the morning—and having someone sober drive us home. Usually the men.”

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