Francia Raisa reflects on backlash to Selena Gomez kidney donation

Francia Raisa donated a kidney to Selena Gomez credit:Bang Showbiz
Francia Raisa donated a kidney to Selena Gomez credit:Bang Showbiz

Francia Raisa has admitted donating a kidney to Selena Gomez "did a lot" for her.

The 35-year-old actress famously donated an organ to the 'Single Soon' hitmaker when she suffered damage due to lupus in 2017 and though she suffered a backlash afterwards amid speculation of a rift between the pair, she has brushed off the criticism and feels "blessed" by how her life has mapped out since then.

Francia appeared on 'The Art of Kindness' podcast and was asked her biggest act of kindness, to which she replied: “Besides donating a kidney, what? It was definitely a personal choice. It was definitely just an act of kindness no matter what the rumours are."

Francia then reflected on how "every hero" experiences some wave of negativity.

She continued: "Listen, we experience it with every hero in the world. I'm sure there was bad stuff written about Martin Luther King after he passed. People are always just gonna look for something negative.

"I put myself in a position where people are interested in my personal life -- I wish that wasn't so crazy. Sometimes people need a distraction from their own life. If I'm that distraction, I guess I just have to be grateful that people care about my feelings. Yeah, it was something I just did because I really felt called to do it and I've been blessed since.

"My first audition was two weeks after surgery was 'Grown-ish' and I booked it. I've just been on my own journey ever since. It definitely did a lot for me. My favorite thing is I'm able to talk to other donors."

The 'Bring It On: All or Nothing' actress admitted in December she and Selena "hadn't spoken much" since the transplant because they "needed time apart" but they are slowly rebuilding their friendship.

She told USA Today: "It’s still crazy to me that people were invested in our friendship. I don’t know why the timing happened the way it did, but I remember being in St Tropez in June and I kept talking about her. We hadn’t spoken much in six years. Especially the last year, we didn’t speak at all.

"Nothing happened, and if you ask either of us, we don't know what happened. But we needed that time apart. Then when you come back together, you're better people. She and I are still getting to know each other again."

The 'How I Met Your Father' actress did not receive a mention in Selena's 'My Mind and Me' documentary and just after that, the former Disney Channel star later referred to pop singer Taylor Swift as her "only friend" in the industry.

But just months later, Selena publicly acknowledged Francia on her birthday before reaching out to her personally and suggesting they talk over dinner.

Francia added: "I don't know why the universe decided this timing … then she reached out and said, 'Let's talk.' It's no beef, just salsa."