Lopez performing during the Dance Again World Tour, June 2012
|Born||Jennifer Lynn Lopez
July 24, 1969
The Bronx, New York, US
|Net worth||$250 million|
|Spouse(s)||Ojani Noa (m. 1997–1998)
Cris Judd (m. 2001–2003)
Marc Anthony (m. 2004)
Jennifer Lynn Muñiz (née Lopez; born July 24, 1969) is an American entertainer, businesswoman, producer and philanthropist. She became interested in pursuing a career in the entertainment industry following a minor role in the 1986 film My Little Girl, to the dismay of her Puerto Rican parents, who believed that it was an unrealistic career route for a Hispanic. Lopez gained her first regular high-profile job as a Fly Girl dancer on In Living Color in 1991, where she remained a regular until she decided to pursue an acting career in 1993. She received her first leading role in the Selena biopic of the same name in 1997. Lopez became the first Latina actress to earn over $1 million for a role the following year, with the film Out of Sight. She ventured into the music industry in 1999 with her debut studio album, On the 6, joining a select few in successfully converting from a film to a music career.
With the simultaneous release of her second studio album J.Lo and her film The Wedding Planner in 2001, Lopez became the first person to have a number one album and film in the same week. Her 2002 remix album, J to tha L–O! The Remixes, was the first in history to debut at number one on the US Billboard 200, while her fifth studio album, Como Ama una Mujer (2007), received the highest first-week sales for a Spanish album in the United States. Lopez has established herself as a prominent figure in both the film and music industry, in a career spanning four decades. With records sales of 75 million and a cumulative film gross of over $2 billion, Lopez is the most influential Hispanic performer in the United States, as well as the highest-paid Latin actress. Her "rags to riches" story is considered a "rarity", having innovated Latin influence in the entertainment community which it lacked for decades.
Lopez's public image and personal relationships have attracted worldwide media attention. Lopez's first high profile relationship was with media mogul Sean Combs, who accompanied her to the 2000 Grammy Awards where she wore the infamous Green Versace dress. She became romantically involved with actor Ben Affleck, who would later became the muse of her third studio album This Is Me... Then (2002), while still married to her second husband Cris Judd. Lopez wed long-time friend Marc Anthony in 2004 and gave birth to their twins, Emme and Maximilian, in February 2008. The entertainer has used her position as a global icon of pop culture to begin her own empire, consisting of various clothing lines, accessories, fragrances, a production company, television shows and a charitable foundation among other activities. As of 2012, Lopez has an estimated net worth of $250 million.
Childhood and early career (1969–96)
Jennifer Lynn Lopez was born on July 24, 1969, in the Castle Hill neighborhood of The Bronx, New York. The middle child of Puerto Rican parents Guadalupe Rodriguez and David Lopez, she has an elder sister, Leslie, and a younger sister, Lynda. David worked the night shift at the Guardian Insurance Company, before becoming a computer technician at the firm, while Guadalupe was a homemaker. When Lopez was born, the family was living in a small apartment. A few years later, her parents had saved up enough money to be able to purchase a two-story house, which was considered a big deal for the relatively poor family. At the age of five, Lopez began taking singing and dancing lessons. She toured New York with her school when she was seven years old. Her parents stressed the importance of work ethic and being able to speak English. They encouraged their three daughters to put on performances at home; singing and dancing in front of each other and their friends so that they would stay "out of trouble". Lopez spent her entire academic career in Catholic schools, finishing at Preston High School. In school, Lopez did gymnastics, ran track on a national level and was a member of the school's softball team. She excelled athletically rather than academically, competing in national track championships. In 1984, at the age of fifteen, she began dating David Cruz, her first boyfriend.
While attending her final year of high school, Lopez learned about a film casting that was seeking several teenage girls for small roles. She auditioned and was cast in My Little Girl (1986), a low-budget film co-written and directed by Connie Kaiserman. Lopez acted as Myra, a young woman at a center for troubled girls. After she finished filming her role in the film, Lopez realized that she wanted to become a "famous movie star". To please her parents, though, she enrolled in Baruch College, only to drop out after one semester. She told her parents her dream of becoming a movie star, but they ensisted that it was a "really stupid" idea and that "no Latinos did that". The differences in opinions led Lopez to move out of their family home and into an apartment in Manhattan. During this period, Lopez performed in regional productions of the musicals: Jesus Christ, Superstar! and Oklahoma. From there, she was hired for the chorus in a Golden Musicals of Broadway, which toured Europe for five months. She was unhappy with the role, as she was the only member of the chorus to not have a solo. She later got a job on the show Synchronicity in Japan, where she acted as a dancer, singer and a choreographer.
Lopez was selected as a backup dancer for the New Kids on the Block in 1991 and performed with them during their performance of "Games" at the 8th Annual American Music Awards. Shortly after, Lopez gained her first regular high-profile job as a Fly Girl dancer on the television program In Living Color. She applied for the job after one of the cast members was unavailable to continue with the show. Out of 2,000 applicants, Lopez made it to the finals. She was the runner-up, but eventually received the role when the winner was unable to accept the job. She moved with Cruz to Los Angeles to film the series and remained a regular cast member until 1993 when she decided to pursue a full-time acting career. Prior to leaving the show, Lopez briefly worked as a backup dancer for American recording artist Janet Jackson. Lopez was set to tour with Jackson on her Janet World Tour in late 1993, but backed out as she wanted to do her "own thing."
Lopez received her first professional acting gig in the direct-to-video drama film Lost in the Wild (1993), co-starring alongside Lindsay Wagner and Robert Loggia. Later in 1993 Lopez signed a deal with CBS to co-star in the television series Second Chances. The show was cancelled after airing only six episodes, due to its set being destroyed by the 1994 Northridge earthquake. A spin-off of the series, entitled Hotel Malibu was launched later that same year. It also ran for only a brief period of time and, like Second Chances, received negative reviews. Lopez received her first major big-screen role in Gregory Nava's 1995 drama My Family, portraying Young Maria. The film, which stars Esai Morales, Jimmy Smits and Edward James Olmos, was critically acclaimed. Although her role was uncredited, Lopez received an Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Female nomination for her performance. In November, Lopez starred in Money Train alongside Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson, as New York City transit cops. The film faced negative reviews and is considered to be a box office bomb; with a budget of $68 million, the film grossed a total of $77 million worldwide. In August 1996, Lopez had a supporting role in the comedy Jack. With a budget of $45 million, the film grossed a total of $59 domestically. The film received generally negative reviews.
Film breakthrough and music career launch (1997–2000)
Lopez married Cuban actor Ojani Noa in February 1997. That same month, she starred alongside Jack Nicholson and Stephen Dorff in the neo-noir thriller Blood and Wine. It was a commercial failure; the $26 million production budget was matched with a domestic gross of $1 million at the box office. The film received generally positive reviews from critics. Lopez starred as the title role of the Selena biopic of the same name in March. Despite having previously worked with the film's director on My Family, Lopez was subjected to an intense auditioning process before she was cast in the film. With a production budget of $20 million, the film grossed a total of $35 million domestically. Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times stated that even in the "forgettable films" Money Train and Jack, Lopez's "presence and ability made her seem just one role away from stardom" and with Selena she's "seized the opportunity and turned in an incandescent presentation that is especially strong during the film's numerous musical numbers". He concluded by calling the film not just a celebration of Selena's life, but also of the actress who portrayed her. After filming Selena, Lopez was "really feeling [her] Latin roots" and cut a demo in Spanish. Lopez's manager then sent the song, entitled "Vivir Sin Ti", to Sony Music Entertainment's Work Group, who showed an interest in signing Lopez. Tommy Mottola, the head of the label suggested to her that she sing in English instead.
In April, Lopez starred in the horror film Anaconda alongside Ice Cube and Jon Voight. With a production budget of $45 million, the film grossed a total of $137 million worldwide, becoming a commercial success. Lopez starred alongside Sean Penn and Billy Bob Thornton in the crime film U Turn in October. The film, which is based on the novel Stray Dogs by John Ridley, received generally positive reception from critics. After being married for less than a year, Lopez and Noa were divorced in January 1998. In June, Lopez starred opposite George Clooney in Out of Sight, Steven Soderbergh's adaptation of Elmore Leonard's novel of the same name (1996). Cast as a deputy federal marshal who falls for a charming criminal, Lopez won rave reviews for her performance and became the first Latina actress to earn over $1 million for a role. With a production budget of $48 million, the film grossed a total of $78 million worldwide, becoming a moderate commercial success. Lopez provided the voice of Azteca in the computer-animated film Antz in October. With a production budget of $105 million, the film grossed a total of $172 million worldwide.
Lopez's debut single, "If You Had My Love", was released in May 1999. It has been cited as being one of 1999's most "infectious singles". Lopez became the first artist to top the Billboard Hot 100 with their debut single since Britney Spears did so with her single, "...Baby One More Time", four months prior. During production of her debut album On the 6, Lopez was aware that she received her recording contract on the premise of her looks and having an already established name in the entertainment industry, and wanted to prove she had musical talent. Prior to the debut of her music, critics wondered why she would take the risk of launching a music career. It was noted that: "If the album was a flop, not only would it embarrass Lopez, but it might even damage her career." "Waiting for Tonight", the third single from On the 6, is widely considered to be Lopez's best song. The song was used frequently as a celebratory anthem for the dawn of the new millennium. Lopez's musical success came as a surprise to critics; its launch made the "popular actor even more popular". Both the music industry and the public became intrigued by "this woman who seemed to have so many different talents". By the end of 1999, Lopez successfully converted herself from a film star to a pop star. She joined a select few in achieving this feat, becoming the first since Vanessa Williams (1992) and Martika (1989).
On December 27, 1999, Lopez and her then-boyfriend Sean Combs were arrested along with two others in connection to a shooting outside the Times Square Club in New York. They were charged with criminal possession of a weapon as well as stolen property. Lopez was soon exonerated, having had nothing to do with the crime. However, Combs was charged and given an indictment by a Manhattan grand jury. Lopez, in the accompaniment of Combs, wore a plunging exotic green Versace silk chiffon dress on the red carpet of the 42nd Grammy Awards on February 22, 2000. The dress "had a low-cut neck that extended several inches below her navel, where it was loosely fastened with a sparkly brooch and then opened out again," exposing her midriff and then as cut along the front of the legs like a bath robe. The dress generated controversy and media attention, with images of Lopez in the dress being downloaded from the Grammy website over half a million times 24 hours after the event. Lopez was surprised by the enormous media coverage, declaring that she had no idea "it was going to become such a big deal". Lopez returned to the big-screen in August, starring in the psychological thriller The Cell opposite Vincent D'Onofrio. With a production budget of $33 million, the film grossed a total of $104 million worldwide. The film received mixed reviews from critics, who stated that although it offers "disturbing, stunning eye candy", it is "undermined by a weak and shallow plotline that offers nothing new".
International success and Bennifer (2001–03)
While working on her second studio album, Lopez wanted to "stay fresh" and innovate the music industry. This led her to change her stage name to J.Lo, a nickname she was given by her fans. Additionally, the entertainer began to develop a public image as a sex symbol. She subsequently named the album J.Lo, and it was released on January 22, 2001. It was a commercial success, having debuted atop the Billboard 200. The same week J.Lo reached number one in the United States, her romantic comedy film The Wedding Planner opened atop the box office. This made her the first entertainer to have a number one album and film at number one in the United States simultaneously. J.Lo spawned successful singles such as "Love Don't Cost a Thing", "Play" and "I'm Real". That May, Lopez starred in the romantic drama film Angel Eyes, which performed disappointingly at the box office and generated mixed reviews. On September 29, 2001, Lopez married her former back-up dancer Cris Judd; this was her second marriage. Following the September 11 attacks, Lopez was heavily involved in charitable activities. Joining various other artists, she was featured on charitable singles such as "What's Going On" and "El Ultimo Adios (The Last Goodbye)" which benefited people affected by the tragedy.
An R&B oriented murder remix of "I'm Real" featuring Ja Rule propelled to the top of US Billboard Hot 100, allowing Lopez's sound to convert from pop to urban. To further enhance her success in this genre, promotion of J.Lo ended and a remix album entitled J to tha L–O! The Remixes was released on February 5, 2002. Its lead single was "Ain't It Funny (Murder Remix)", which also featured Ja Rule; similarly to "I'm Real", it reached number one in the United States. The remix album debuted at the summit of the Billboard 200, becoming the first to do so. It is also the third highest-selling remix album in history. J to tha L–O! The Remixes spawned two other singles, "I'm Gonna Be Alright" and "Alive", a ballad co-written by Judd. That May, Lopez starred in the thriller film Enough as a woman named Slim who is forced to go on the run because of an abuse husband. The film performed modestly, grossing $52 million at the box office. The film, dubbed a "kick-butt, female empowerment" movie, received generally mixed reviews. While filming Enough, which required her to practice Krav Maga, Lopez became overworked and suffered a nervous breakdown. Years later, she confessed, "I was like – I don't want to move, I don't want to talk, I don't want to do anything."
In June 2002, Lopez filed for divorce from Judd and began publicly dating actor Ben Affleck. In September, Lopez released her first fragrance, Glow by JLo. It performed strongly despite predictions that it would fail, and became America's top-selling fragrance. Lopez was credited with bringing back celebrity endorsement of fragrances and setting the trend of other celebrities endorsing them. That November, Affleck and Lopez became engaged. The media began to refer to them as "Bennifer" and they became a prominent supercouple in the media and popular culture. Bennifer became a popular term, which was eventually entered into urban dictionaries and neologism dictionaries as notable, and the name blend started the trend of other celebrity couples being referred to by the combination of each other's first names.
The month of her engagement to Affleck saw the release of her third studio album, This Is Me... Then, which was dedicated to him. It spawned the internationally successful singles "Jenny from the Block" and "All I Have". The album itself, which featured multiple love songs, performed strongly, having sold 2.6 million copies in the United States. December 2002 saw Lopez star opposite Ralph Fiennes in the romantic comedy film Maid in Manhattan. She played Marisa Ventura, a struggling single mother who lives in the Bronx and makes her living cleaning rooms in a super-luxurious Manhattan hotel. Marisa gets mistaken for a socialite by a princely politician, who she falls in love with. With a production budget of $55 million, the film grossed $155 million at the box office worldwide. The New York Times compared the film's storyline to her song "Jenny from the Block". Lopez starred opposite Affleck in the romantic comedy Gigli in August 2003. With a production budget of $54 million, the film grossed a total of $7 million worldwide, becoming a box office bomb. The film received universally negative reviews from film critics, who deemed it to be "bizarre and clumsily plotted". Gilgi is often considered to be one of the worst films of all time. The couple postponed their nuptials indefinitely a day prior to the planned ceremony on September 14, citing the media's interference with the event as the reason.
Decline in popularity, motherhood and hiatus (2004–09)
In March 2004, Lopez had a minor role in the film Jersey Girl, alongside Affleck. Her character, Gertrude Steiney, dies during childbirth within the first 15 minutes of the film. From the intense media scrutiny following the couple's break-up, it was noted that "they may need to put Lopez in a coffin on the poster if they want anyone to come". With a production budget of $35 million, the film was a commercial failure, earning a total of $36 million at the box office. The film, however, received generally positive reviews from critics, despite being "full of cloyingly sentimental cliches". Following her break-up with Affleck in January, Lopez began dating long-time friend Anthony. The couple wed on June 5 at her Beverly Hills mansion, one week after Anthony's divorce from Dayanara Torres was finalized. Two men attempted to ransom a private wedding video which was stolen from the couple for one million dollars; however they were arraigned in Manhattan Criminal Court on charges of conspiracy, attempted grand larceny and possession of stolen property. In October, Lopez co-starred alongside Richard Gere in the drama Shall We Dance?, a re-make of the 1996 Japanese film of the same title. With a production budget of $50 million, the film grossed a total of $170 million worldwide. It received generally positive reviews from critics, although it was noted that it "loses the nuances of the original", with the loss of cultural context and the addition of high-profile celebrities.
In 2004, during low-key visits to the Children's Hospital Los Angeles, which Lopez is an avid support of, she befriended eleven-year-old cancer patient Paige Patterson. Patterson attended the inaugural Noche de Niños gala for the hospital in which Lopez was presented with an award, however the morning after became even more sick and died in November 2004. Lopez has stated that Patterson made her realize why her charity work is important. Lopez dedicated Rebirth, her fourth studio album, to Patterson. According to Lopez, Rebirth "came about because I was on such a roller-coaster ride, that was my career from my first album to my last album, and I did a bunch of movie projects in between. I finally took some time just for myself, and [when] I came back, this was the first project I did. I felt like it was a new beginning for me, like I was, in a way, reborn. I was where I was when I made my first album". Tracy Hopkins of NBC's Today Music noted that after "fawning" over Affleck on This Is Me... Then", Lopez "wisely keeps her love life out of the spotlight" on Rebirth and only references her relationship with Anthony on a few tracks. In May, Lopez starred alongside Jane Fonda in the romantic comedy Monster-in-Law. She received $15 million for her role as Charlie, an artist who is pitted against her fiance's mother when she does not accept her as being the right woman for her son. With a production budget of $43 million, the film grossed a total of $155 million worldwide. The film received generally negative reviews from film critics, who stated although Fonda "steals the show" in her "return to the screen", the "tired" script and "flimsy performances" make Monster-in-Law fall "flat". In August, Lopez starred alongside Robert Redford and Morgan Freeman in An Unfinished Life, a drama film based on the novel of the same name. The film was a commercial failure, only grossing $18 million worldwide with its production budget of $30 million.
Lopez sued to prevent Noa from publishing a book containing personal details about their marriage in April 2006, contending it violated their confidentiality agreement. In August 2007, a court-appointed arbitrator issued a permanent injunction forbidding Noa from "criticizing, denigrating, casting in a negative light or otherwise disparaging" Lopez. She was awarded $545,000 in compensatory damages and Noa was ordered to hand over all copies of materials related to the book to Lopez or her attorney. Bordertown, a film based on the Female homicides in Ciudad Juárez, made its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on May 18, 2006. Lopez, who also acts as the film's producer, stars as Lauren Adrian, an American news reporter for the Chicago Sentinel who wants to be assigned to the Iraq front-lines to cover the war. The film received a limited release in theaters throughout Europe in 2007 and a direct-to-video release in many other countries in 2008, including the United States. Bordertown was a commercial failure, grossing a total of $8 million worldwide, with its $21 million production budget. DanceLife, a reality series following the lives of seven dancers trying to break into the world of professional dance, aired on MTV from January 15 to March 5, 2007. Lopez produced, created and was featured in the show. According to the album's co-producer Estéfano, Lopez's fifth studio album Como Ama una Mujer would "prove critics wrong" with its "big songs that require a voice"; referring to the criticism of Lopez having a "limited" vocal tone. The album received the highest first-week sales in the United States for a Spanish album and the highest digital sales. Lopez and Anthony launched their co-headlining North American concert tour on September 28. The tour grossed an estimated $10 million, with one dollar from each ticket sold being donated to Run for Something Better—a charitable organization supporting physical fitness programs for children.
Lopez's sixth studio album Brave, released in October, become her lowest-charting album worldwide. A five-part miniseries, Jennifer Lopez Presents: Como Ama una Mujer, based on the lyrics of Como Ama una Mujer aired on Univision from October 30 to November 27, 2007. On November 7, during the final night of their tour, Lopez and Anthony officially confirmed that they were expecting their first child together. The announcement ended months of speculation over the pregnancy, which was deemed by the media to be the worst kept secret of the year. It was revealed on February 6, 2008 that the couple were expecting twins. Her father announced the news, revealing that it runs in the family: "My sister also had twins, so it's a hereditary thing". Lopez gave birth to a son, Maximilian David, and a daughter, Emme Maribel, in Long Island, New York on February 22. The twins were introduced in the March 11, 2008 issue of People, for which the magazine paid a reported $6 million—the photographs of the twins became the most expensive celebrity picture ever taken at the time.
Return to prominence (2010–12)
Lopez parted ways with Epic Records in February 2010, citing that she had fulfilled her contractual obligations and now wished to release her seventh studio album Love? under a new label. Her departure from the label temporarily halted production on the album, which commenced in 2009. Upon signing a new contract with Island Records, recording resumed on the album. The New York Daily News revealed that Lopez would be taking some of the records recorded under Sony Music Entertainment to her new label so that they could be included on the album. In April, Lopez starred in the romantic comedy The Back-up Plan, her first theatrical role in three years. With a $35 million production budget, the film grossed $77 million worldwide. While Lopez's acting in the film was praised, the film was criticized for its "unrelatable characters" and "predictable plot". In June, following the departure of Ellen DeGeneres from American Idol, it was reported that Lopez was in talks to join season ten's judging panel. During this same time, Lopez and Anthony were being considered for a role on The X Factor for their appeal to Latin and International markets. It was officially announced in September that Lopez would be joining the tenth season of American Idol. MTV stated that the deal was "mutually beneficial to all those involved", while CNN reported that Lopez was viewing it as a decision to revive her career, while American Idol producers believed that Lopez and Steven Tyler's appointments would strengthen viewing figures. In October, Lopez released her fourteenth fragrance, Love and Glamour. The perfume was inspired by Lopez's forthcoming "return to the spotlight".
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L'Oreal Paris named Lopez their new Global Ambassador and the face of their brands, including EverPure hair care, Preference hair color and Youth Code skin care. Her EverSleek hair care ads made their debut in early 2011, to coincide with the release of Love? and her debut as a judge on America Idol. To further promote her comeback, in February, Venus chose Lopez as their new Global Ambassador. Lopez's comeback single "On the Floor" was released later that same month. The song topped the charts across the globe, becoming one of the most successful singles of the year. The song also became her highest charting single commercial single as a lead artist, as well as her most successful airplay hit on contemporary hit radio, since "Jenny from the Block". Love?, which was released in May, was a moderate commercial success, and was viewed as a humble comeback from Lopez, as many had considered her recording career over. Lopez launched her next fragrance Love and Light in July, exclusively on HSN. 51,000 bottles of the fragrance were sold at its premiere, becoming Lopez's most successful fragrance launch to date, making over $2.9 million. In September, Lopez launched the Jennifer Lopez Collection, a clothing and accessories line for Kohl's with Tommy Hilfiger. In addition to the clothing line, she also launched the Jennifer Lopez Home Collection, featuring bedding, towels and luggage. Later that same month Fiat, an Italian automobile manufacturer, enlisted Lopez to promote their products, including the 2012 Fiat 500 Cabrio. Olivier Francois, the Chrysler chief marketing officer, said in a statement that: "Jennifer fits perfectly with the brand not because of who she is but because of what she is — authentic, passionate, modern and a fighter determined to stand out from the rest".
In January 2012, Lopez returned as judge on the eleventh season of American Idol, earning a reported $20 million. Later that same month, a new talent show, ¡Q'Viva! The Chosen, created by Simon Fuller premiered on Univision and was a hit for the channel. It followed Lopez, Anthony and director-choeographer Jamie King as they travelled across 21 countries in Latin America to find new talent for a Las Vegas show. On May 18, Lopez returned to the big screen starring alongside an ensemble cast consisting of Cameron Diaz, Elizabeth Banks, Matthew Morrison and Dennis Quaid in the film What to Expect When You're Expecting. Based on the novel of the same name, Lopez plays Holly, a woman who adopts a baby from abroad with her husband after difficulty conceiving. With a budget of $40 million, the film grossed a total of $84 million worldwide, becoming a moderate commercial success. The film, however, received generally negative reviews from film critics. In late May, Lopez released her fragrance Glowing by JLo, which she described as an "evolution" of Glow by JLo.
Lopez launched the Dance Again World Tour, her first headlining concert tour, on June 14. On July 12, Lopez launched Teeology, a luxury T-shirt e-commerce. Lopez voiced Shira, a saber tooth tiger, in the animated film, Ice Age: Continental Drift, the fourth film in the Ice Age franchise. The film debuted at number one at the US box office, having grossed $46 million in its opening weekend, becoming Lopez's highest opening weekend figure. With a $95 million production budget, the film has since grossed $877 million worldwide.
Lopez's first greatest hits album, Dance Again... the Hits, was released on July 24, 2012 in the United States. It was released by Epic Records, as Lopez owed them one final album to end her contract, despite previously announcing that she had fulfilled her contract with the label. Lopez, who was going through a divorce with Anthony and the "breakup of a family", felt as if the album's sole single, "Dance Again", had come to her at the "perfect moment". "Dance Again" and "Goin' In", a single from the soundtrack of the dance film Step Up Revolution, both reached the top of the Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs, giving Lopez her twelfth and thirteenth number one on that chart, respectively. Additionally, "Goin' In" became her tenth consecutive number one on the chart, tying Katy Perry for having the most consecutive numbers ones on the chart. nuvoTV announced in September its premier partnership with Lopez, that will see her work on the creative side of the network, managing marketing and program production with her production company, Nuyorican Productions, as well as periodically appearing in network programming. In December, Lopez held a charity drive, asking her social media followers to donate to her three favorite charities—the Boys & Girls Club, the Children's Hospital of Los Angeles and the American Red Cross—for a chance to win tickets for the last show of the Dance Again World Tour in Puerto Rico. The American Red Cross was partly chosen to benefit victims of Hurricane Sandy which devastated parts of her home town, New York City.
Upcoming projects (2013)
In November 2012, RedOne revealed that he is the executive producer of Lopez's upcoming eighth studio album. He described the album to MTV News as "very special" which would combine all of her genres, including "urban/hip-hop" along with "the dance, the rhythmic, the Latin". Lopez then began recording material for the album the following month, and has confirmed that it will be released sometime this year. In January 2013, she told USA Today that she was considering releasing a Christmas album, stating: "This is going to be my 10th album. It has to be great or I'm not putting it out". Lopez starred alongside Jason Statham, as Leslie, in the crime thriller Parker, which was released on January 25. Her performance in the film generated positive reviews. The Chicago Tribune said that the role gave Lopez "an opportunity to be dramatic, romantic, funny, depressed, euphoric and violent. The audience stays with her all the way". Parker performed modestly at the box office, grossing over $46 million with a production budget of $35 million. At the 2013 Grammy Awards held on February 10, Lopez gained notoriety for wearing a "daring" black dress which revealed her "right leg all the way up to the hip", despite a dress code which had been issued by CBS earlier which forbid attendees from showing an excessive amount of skin.
On May 8, 2013, the lead single from Lopez's eighth studio album, "Live It Up" featuring Pitbull, was released. Later that day, it was officially announced that Lopez had signed to RedOne's music label 2101 Records as well as Capitol Records. In a press release, the record producer stated, "This is like a dream come true for me [...] It was amazing to be able to work with Jennifer on so many great records over the past two years, and now it is such an honor to have her on my label. She is a creative inspiration and a true global superstar artist who brings so much to everything she does. I feel that this is historic and a wonderful opportunity to launch 2101/Capitol in this way." On May 25, Lopez was announced as the chief creative officer of nuvoTV.
The Fosters, an upcoming television series about a same sex couple raising a family produced by Lopez, will premiere on June 3, 2013 on ABC Family. Of her decision to produce the series, she stated, "I had an aunt who was gay. I lived with her and I loved her. She just passed away from cancer. I thought of her often when I was thinking about taking on this project and the prejudices that she faced".
A twenty-second sample of "If You Had My Love", a mid-tempo pop song which served as Lopez's first single. Its lyrics were noted to be "infectious", with "feisty" strong vocals sung by an "insistent" Lopez who sings about a number of ground rules for her lover before they begin a relationship.
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Lopez's music has ranged from pop and Latin pop, to dance, funk and R&B among other genres. Her debut album On the 6 was described by the entertainer as Latin soul, incorporating R&B and Latin influences. The album saw Lopez begin to sing about the primary subject of her material—a trend that she would follow in all of her future records—love. On the 6 also contained dance, funk and pop music, prominent on songs such as her debut single "If You Had My Love" and the infamous "Waiting for Tonight", which is often used as a celebratory anthem for the new year. Although Lopez sings more in Spanish on her second album J.Lo, the album was noted for being too similar to her previous music. However, it did see her explore more themes of female and self-empowerment. With the release of "I'm Real (Murder Remix)" featuring Ja Rule and her remix album J to tha L–O! The Remixes, Lopez's musical style became more urban-oriented. However, around this time saw the release of "Alive", a downtempo ballad which was a departure from her previous uptempo music. Chuck Taylor of Billboard stated that: "Remember that 'Oh, my' feeling the first time you heard Madonna sing her first ballad, 'Crazy for You'? It's déjà vu with 'Alive'."
Even more musical departure occurred for Lopez with the release of This Is Me... Then. It was described has having a more mature contemporary R&B sound that was absent from her previous work. The album was inspired by music of the 1970s, containing various music samples from that era, as well as by the works of Luther Vandross and Stevie Wonder. On This Is Me... Then, Lopez makes several references to her romance with Ben Affleck, most notably on tracks such as "Dear Ben" and "Baby I Love U!". Following her break-up with Affleck and a musical hiatus, she entered a new phase of her life career with the release of Rebirth, a more pop rock and mid tempo album. Despite being recently married to Marc Anthony at the time, she included multiple references to her break up with Affleck, demonstrating this on the break-up track "He'll Be Back". Rebirth contained various foreign genres to Lopez, including African music, while utilizing stronger use of percussion and horns. Her first Spanish album, Como Ama una Mujer's primary genre consisted of romance. Brave, a dance album, is filled with bright beats and happy hooks, that isn't meant for clubbing: "it's dance music for home, maybe background music for some chores". Her seventh album Love? saw Lopez go further in the dance music direction. On the album, Lopez covers topics such as her past loves in her songs, "One Love" and "(What Is) Love?" which she goes into details through lyrics about her remaining an optimistic about love.
Lopez loves a "good lyricist" and has been most influenced by Tina Turner, James Brown, Michael Jackson and Madonna. Growing up, Madonna served as her biggest musical influence for being a "quintessential performer" and a "push-the-envelope" person, while she credits Barbra Steisand as her idol. Her soubrette vocal type has been noted to be "limited"; Lopez having experienced insecurity herself about the strength of her voice. However, she credited Anthony with giving her the confidence she needed to "let it out". Of her vocals, Rolling Stone declared, "Instead of strained vocal pyrotechnics, Lopez sticks to the understated R&B murmur of a round-the-way superstar who doesn't need to belt because she knows you're already paying attention [...] Behold jiggy Jennifer Lopez, song-and-dance woman: She makes a little va-va and a whole lot of voom go a long way". Despite praising the production of her music, Entertainment Weekly wrote, "As soon as Lopez opens her mouth, though, all this advance work falls by the wayside. On record, the husky-voiced voluptuousness that has become Lopez's trademark in films like Out of Sight simply vanishes". Today Music observed, "like Madonna and Janet, people don’t listen to J.Lo for the poignant lyrics—she’s best when riding a dance groove".
Described as an icon of pop culture, Lopez is considered pop "royalty", a "triple threat" performer and "pop princess". Television presenter Ray Martin noted Lopez for her commercial appeal and described her as a "rarity" and "a showbiz phenomenon who's up there with Madonna [...] she's been in more than twenty-five movies with leading men like George Clooney, Robert Redford and Jack Nicholson". Since the late 1990s, Lopez has developed an image as a sex symbol and "one of the most desirable women on the planet". Despite being dubbed a "Bronx Barbie", Lopez has stated that she has "been trained like a boxer" and knows how to fight. She is often noted in the media for her curvaceous figure, in particular her buttocks. A survey by Nutrisystem Diet Index revealed American females want her legs and bottom.
In November 1998, Lopez was named "Sexiest Woman of the Year" by Details magazine. She led FHM's "100 Sexiest Women" list twice, as well as appearing on the list multiple times. In April 2011, Lopez was named "World's Most Beautiful Women" by People, on a the 22nd list compiled and published by People of 100 people judged to be the most beautiful individuals in the world. Marianne Garvey of E! Online said Lopez looked "absolutely flawless" on the "spring-inspired" pink and green cover of the issue, while also commenting on her "striking beauty and that gorgeous face". Lopez was proud that she "wasn't 25" and a woman her age was chosen, with multiple celebrities praising her; Kelly Osbourne said "I couldn't agree more. I've met her and she's stunning", while her American Idol co-worker Ryan Seacrest praised her on his radio show On Air with Ryan Seacrest, stating "I'm proud to work with the most beautiful women in the world". In March 2013, Lopez was ranked fourth on VH1's "100 Sexiest Artists" list, while Vibe magazine named her the most "lustable" celebrity of the past twenty years the following month.
Lopez is known for her fashion sense, and has changed her personal appearance multiple times, scoring several different looks over the duration of her career. Her fashion is described by Billboard's Lauren Savage as "stunning" and "scantily clad". Describing her fashion evolution during an interview with Harper's Bazaar, Lopez felt that her original "boyish, hip-hoppy" look combined with her going onto adding the "sexy element to it" which was about "classic things, movie stars" and Jackie O, is her style. However, Lopez has been criticized by the animal rights organization People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals as well as celebrities such as Pink and Pamela Anderson for her use of fur in her fashion lines and outfits. Despite fame, Lopez has received bad press over rumors that she is a "demanding" and a "diva". Despite feeling she has "owned" the title of a diva, Lopez has dismissed these rumors and also stated: "I certainly don't like and I've never been a person who has what they call 'diva behaviour', which is something they tried to pin on me for a long time."
Described as the most influential Hispanic performer in the United States, Lopez is widely credited with breaking barriers in the entertainment industry for Hispanic people. Writing for The Record, Cindy Pearlman stated that Lopez is responsible for welcoming "Latina presence" into the film industry, which was a "whites-only preserve" for much of its history." In his book Icons of American Popular Culture (2009), author Robert C. Cotrell described Lopez as being a Latina Oprah Winfrey and the embodiment of the American dream, "Boasting a far more authentic rags-to-riches tale". Cotrell stated that she is a "multidimensional artist who had turned into a financial powerhouse" while demonstrating that an "A-lister" could still be successful as "a top recording artist, and operate as a major player in the corporate world". Lopez's critically acclaimed performance in the film Selena (1997) garnered her a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy, and influenced a generation of Latin actors. The following year, she was recognized as the highest-paid Latin actress after earning $2 million for her critically acclaimed role in Out of Sight (1998). In February 2007, People en Español placed Lopez atop its "100 Most Influential Hispanics" list. Later that month, Lopez received the Artists for Amnesty International award "in recognition of her work as producer and star of Bordertown, a film exposing the ongoing murders of hundreds of women in the border city of Juárez, Mexico".
With the release of her debut album On the 6, Lopez's influence over the Latin public began to grow. She was credited with Ricky Martin for beginning the "Latin explosion" and "ethnic boom" of the late 1990s, in which multiple Hispanic artists including Marc Anthony, Enrique Iglesias and Christina Aguilera entered mainstream music with English songs. Mark Gaurino of the Daily Herald described Lopez as "crossover royalty". Currently, Lopez remains the only Latin actress to appear three times on The Hollywood Reporter's annual 'Actress Salary List'.
Lopez has sold over 70 million records worldwide, with numerous albums and songs of hers having been certified by the Recording Industry Association of America. Her second studio effort J.Lo (2001) became the first female album to reach number one in the United States under the Epic Records label. J to tha L-O! The Remixes (2002) is the first number one remix album in the United States, appearing in the 2004 issue of the Guinness World Records for this feet. One of the most commercially successful artist of the 2000s decade, Lopez was ranked sixteenth on VH1's "100 Greatest Women In Music" list in February 2012. At the 2010 World Music Awards, Lopez was honored with The Legend Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts. Lopez's return to the spotlight in 2011 is considered one of the greatest comebacks ever. Los Angeles Times named her the "World's Greatest Comeback Act" of the decade that December, and Billboard's reader's poll named her the best comeback act of the year. Lopez's media exposure that year allowed her to become the third most-searched musical artist on the internet, and fifth most searched human overall. Her critically acclaimed music video for "On the Floor", her highest-peaking single on the music charts in eight years, became the highest-viewed YouTube video of the year. It remains the most-viewed music video by a female in history. Additionally, "On the Floor" is one of the best-selling singles of all time, with sales of 8.4 million digital copies worldwide.
In May 2012, Lopez was ranked at number one on business magazine Forbes's Celebrity 100 list, which named her the most powerful celebrity, with earnings of $52 million that year. Dorothy Pomerantz of Forbes said that it was due to her role as judge on American Idol, endorsement deals and her much publicized personal life. Lopez has also garnered accolades for her fashion career; Us Weekly named her Style Icon of the 2000s decade. Her most memorable Fashion moment in her career was the Green Versace "Jungle Dress" that she wore at the 42nd Grammy Awards In 2000. A poll by Debenhams, published in The Daily Telegraph, voted it the fifth most iconic dress of all time.
Lopez's influence as an entertainer and fashion icon has garnered her praise from her peers. She has been cited as an idol and influence by several including Jessica Alba, Kat DeLuna, Becky G, Kerry Washington, Britney Spears, Selena Gomez, Raquel Castro and Pitbull among others. Alba stated that the entertainer "opened doors for ethnic girls like me", while fellow Latin artist DeLuna said she "paved the way for Latinas". Washington, who attended a local Boys & Girls Club with the entertainer, said she "was like the dancer who mad it big and moved to Hollywood", which inspired her to take the risk and begin her own career. Britney Spears credited Lopez as her "idol", and said, "she's so beautiful and even though she's gotten older, she hasn't aged at all. She looks more amazing than ever and I really admire and respect that." Lopez's Jersey Girl co-star, Raquel Castro, who played her on-screen daughter, said Lopez "has been my role model from the start", and she "wore out" her VCR tape of the film Selena. Similarly, actress Q’orianka Kilcher thanked Lopez during her 2006 ALMA Awards acceptance speech for inspiring her to act through her performance in Selena. Mike Doughty said his life was "over" after leaving his band, Soul Coughing, but after seeing a Lopez music video he became inspired to live his life. Former Disney star Selena Gomez stated that seeing Lopez's performance in the film Selena was a "life-changing moment." Gomez said she tried emulated Lopez's attire from the film. Kelly Rowland, Kim Kardashian, Carmen Electra and Jennifer Love Hewitt have all lauded Lopez's style and red carpet looks, crediting her as a style icon.
List of works
- For a full chronology of Lopez's film and video work, see Jennifer Lopez filmography and Jennifer Lopez videography.
- For a full chronology of Lopez's music work, see Jennifer Lopez discography and List of songs recorded by Jennifer Lopez.
- List of artists who reached number one in the United States
- List of artists who reached number one on the U.S. dance chart
- List of best-selling music artists in the United States
- List of Puerto Ricans
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Jennifer Lopez|
- Official website
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- Jennifer Lopez at Allmusic
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- Jennifer Lopez at the Internet Movie Database