Cruz has volunteered in Uganda and India, where she spent one week working with Mother Teresa; she donated her salary from The Hi-Lo Country to help fund the late nun's mission.
The controversial film featured Cruz and Bardem caught in a absurd love-triangle and director José Juan Bigas Luna makes sure to capitalize on the electricity between his leading actors in this sexy dark comedy.
She has since appeared in films in a range of genres, including the comedy Waking Up in Reno (2002), the thriller Gothika (2003), the Christmas film Noel (2004), and the action adventure Sahara (2005).
She was critically acclaimed for her roles in Volver (2006) and Nine (2009), receiving Golden Globe and Academy Award nominations for each.
The couple were among 100 film professionals to sign the open Spanish letter calling on the European Union to end Israel’s military operation in Gaza, along with director Pedro Almodovar in July.
But their actions have sparked anger in top Hollywood executives, which has reportedly called their careers in to question.