Salma Hayek will soon have a much greater status than just an actress. The Puss in Boots star was among those named in President Nicolas Sarkozy’s list of inductees into France’s Légion d’Honneur with the title Chevalier, or “Knight.” The Legion of Honor was founded in 1802 by Napoleon and was used as a merit award for military personnel and civilians for their service to France, although it’s also awarded to individuals of international standing.
Despite Hayek’s contribution to cinema, many are questioning whether she’s worthy of the prestigious title. Former minister Henri Torre went so far as to decline his Legion of Honor saying, “Too many people were nominated who do not deserve to be honored,” and that the awards had “lost their value.” Others shared in his skepticism of Hayek’s induction because her husband, billionaire Francois-Henri Pinault, happens to be close personal friends with Sarkozy. The rumors were also fueled by the fact that her father-in-law, a retired business tycoon, was also included in the same list with a promotion to Grand Officer of the Legion. Regardless, Hayek will be officially inducted into the Legion with a formal presidential medal pinning in the next couple of months. She’ll be joining a string of A-list celebs who have received the award in past years, including Clint Eastwood, Robert Redford, and Robert De Niro.