Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Small town girl shows some talent, is helped along by a nice local boy, becomes a huge Hollywood star, and forgets where she came from, leaving her hometown admirers disappointed and heartbroken.
Well, Gal Gadot’s different.
It should come as no surprise to readers of this column that the actress, despite her sudden rush of success, remains impressively, almost incredibly, real. How real? Real enough to remember the photographer who, a decade ago—before Fast & Furious, before playing the idiotically named assassin Natanya in Steve Carrell and Tina Fey’s Date Night—saw her potential and shot her in all her glory. Now that she’s netted what the Israeli press reports is a string of international ad campaigns worth $16 million—including gigs for Reebok, Revlon, and Chinese phone maker Huawei—Gadot insisted that her old-time photographer, the Israeli Dudi Hasson, be flown to Los Angeles, twice, to shoot her.
Had she only been loyal to a talented colleague who knew her way back when, dayenu. But being an international superstar, Gadot realizes the value of her currency of cool and uses it in the best way possible. Instead of prancing about, provincially pining for the attention of the rich and the famous (see under: Refaeli, Bar), Gadot, a wonder woman all the way, made it on her own terms and now uses her renown to promote the work of her real friends, which is what you do only when you’re confident and free of all complexes.
You can be sure that other major companies will soon take their cues from Gadot and hire the wildly talented Hasson for their shoots. In the meantime, you can check out his portfolio here.