'The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard': Salma Hayek Details 'Magical,' Painful Improvisation With Ryan Reynolds (Exclusive)

The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard has already garnered a lot of attention ahead of its release, and the film is anticipated to earn $15 million over Father's Day weekend. While there are several returning aspects and attractions in this sequel film, there's a lot of new ones too. Salma Hayek returns as Sonia Kincaid and plays the lead role, injecting a little something she calls "divine justice" into the amplified storyline from the preceding film, The Hitman's Bodyguard. The new aspects provide a perfect concoction of action and comedy on the big screen. Also perfect is how well the returning cast meshes, including Ryan Reynolds as Michael Bryce, Samuel L. Jackson as Darius Kincaid, and Hayek at the head of the film.

During an exclusive interview with PopCulture.com, Hayek says one thing she loved about filming this time around was improvisation. "A lot, yes," Hayek said when asked how much she and the cast went off-script. "Sam and I [...] everytime we're together, sometimes in the car, there's a lot of action happening and [director Patrick Hughes] would just say, 'Just improvise the entire time, improvise the entire time,' and we're like, 'Again? Okay, let's go.'" Despite Hayek's jokes about having to do it on repeat, it's a feature of the film that she loved being in the mix.

"I love it; I love it," she gushed. "And when you get to do it with the masters? I mean." She adds that while she and Reynolds did have some "structured scenes" they rearranged a lot of it, calling it "magical." Hayek highlighted two completely off-the-cuff scenes and couldn't hide her sense of gratitude while describing her work with Reynolds and Jackson.

That doesn't mean it was all fun for the actress, adding that having to slap Reynolds repeatedly was difficult. "I slapped him a couple of times," she confessed. "That was really hard. I did feel very bad because they told me, 'You can hit him anywhere except the glasses,' and I hit exactly the glasses! And I knew that hurt, but it hurt me too by the way," she chuckled as she pointed to her hand. On the other hand, director Patrick Hughes loved making Reynolds the punching bag, even joking he found "joy" in it. "Do you realize the joy I have in hurting Ryan on a daily basis!" Hughes joked with PopCulture.

"Like, everyday he walks up and says, 'Hey what are we gonna do today?' And I'm like, 'Oh, I'm gonna shoot you with a shotgun, and you're gonna fly through that wall, you're gonna hit all that glass, you're gonna roll out and you're gonna have cuts because all the glass is all over your face. He's like, 'Oh great.'" Reynolds took it like a champ though, and between that and the hilarious dynamic of characters, the film is filled with a lot of comical relief.