Friends with Benefits

Antonio Banderas and Melanie Griffiths are media sweethearts here in Spain. The media LOVE them. Why? Because they are always polite and gracious to the press and Antonio has never forgotten his Spanish roots. Just last weekend a photographer was following them whilst they were riding their bikes in Malaga. When he caught up with them, he was given a big hug by both and invited into the nearest bar for a coffee.

The Spanish love Melanie because she has embraced Spanish culture. Like me her language skills have a lot to be desired, but she tries, and the Spanish love a "trier".

Today Antonio gave an interview where he was explaining how whenever new Spanish actors come to Hollywood, him and Melanie open their homes to them, invite them to stay at their place(because he remembered how frightened he felt when he landed in LA alone). He cooks a huge paella, invites all his industry contacts, and does whatever he can to help aspiring actors in Hollywood.

In this interview he was speaking in particular about two specific actors who stayed with him (on separate ocassions) for months! When they were not staying in his home, they were on the phone daily asking Antonio to sort contacts out for them etc. He explained how now that "they" have made it big, when he sees them around they just turn the other way. They don't even acknowledge him or Melanie. One of the aforementioned individuals stayed in his home for over a year! Antonio was by no means complaining or sounding bitter. What he was saying was how sad that kind of behaviour was, because as fast as you can make it in Hollywood, it can chew you up and spit you out.

Who do you think he was talking about?

It is really sad when "friends" only use you for what they can obtain. Despite my professional background I am not very good at sussing out people close to me, who are like this; on the other hand my husband is really savvy.

What about you? Do you think there is a place for friends with benefits? Are you good at sussing out people like this quickly? How do you deal with "friends" like that before you kick them to the curb ;-)

Would be interested to hear your thoughts.

p.s you might also be interested in this post "Don't Forget Your Roots".


  1. I'm so pleasantly surprised that they are still married, I never thought they would have made it because of the way their romance started.

    I can smell a user a mile away.

  2. It's nice to see that these two have remained together.
    I have gotten better with people who take advantage over the "wall" goes up and I allow them to the burn the bridge all on their own.

  3. I think theyare such a sweet couple and I totally love Antonio as Puss in Boots in Shrek - awesome guy!
    I can't believe those now made it big in Hollywood guys have the audacity to behave the way they do, it's shocking & disgusting!

    I have friends whom i've known for more than 2 decades so i've got them sussed, but I know what you mean about friends w/benefits or the ones who only contact you whenever they have problems and want to use you as a sounding board! Gah!


  4. I'm not good at sussing out the users; I'm getting better, but have a long ways to go.

    I, too, never thought Melanie and Antonio would make it. It's nice to read that not only have they made it, they're thriving!

    I went to Malaga in 1999 and remember it as a beautiful place.

  5. I never knew that they were this sweet and helpful! It´s amazing that there are still people out there ready to help the others. And it´s so sad that there are people who use this help and then turn away...It happened to me several times in the past, and I took my lessons.
    Yet, I can´t help but be optimistic and believe in the good in people!

    xx Ivana
    Style in the City

  6. Thank you friends for all your comments. Has anyone guessed who Antonio was talking about, or are you all too polite to say?
    I saw a lot of friends with benefits when I moved to Spain. Friends I hadn't heard of for years, suddenly turning up on my doorstep for a free break.

  7. What a wonderful post. It helps restore belief that kind and warm people still exist after they have "made it". I love that A & M ~ give unconditionally and expect nothing back. Hopefully the friends he is refering to , will one day "grow up" and remember to give a helping hand to others.

    I use to be able to spot a "Fairweather" friend; but now I am more like you. Hubby always says I give and help too people who do not appreciate it. For me if I can help someone I do ... expect nothing in return ... if I get a thank you, great, if not .. thats ok too. Hopefully the friendship or kindness I give someone unconditionally will help them one day to help another... Yes, I rend to live with rose coloured glasses :) ...Happy week-end.xo HHL

  8. I like this couple, and it says a lot about them that they have escaped the Hollywood spotlight and just genuinely seem to enjoy their life together. My boyfriend thinks Antonio is the coolest thing since sliced bread. We're headed to Spain in two weeks and I think he's hoping to run into them. Maybe they'll host us at their place?:)

  9. It's hard to tell if a couple is happy or not just by their internet presence, interviews and so forth.
    Nice that they are still married. I abhor such friends; users as they are called by some;-)

  10. I think Melanie and Antonio are such a cute couple. I have always thought she was adorable with the cutest little voice, and he is just so handsome. Nice to see a Hollywood couple still together.

  11. What a lovely couple! It's so nice to hear how generous they are! The world needs more people like that!


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