Jennifer Lopez says she had to 'break out' of playing stereotypical roles like 'the maid' onscreen
- In a recent panel for Variety's "Power of Women" series, Jennifer Lopez reminisced with her former agent (now coproducer) about the beginning of her acting career.
- "When I started, I would always go in for what they would call 'the maid,' 'the Rosie Perez-type role,' 'the dishwasher,'" Lopez said.
- "I was like 'I don't want to do that,' and I had to kind of break out of that and convince somebody to put me in the first romantic comedy," she continued, "which was 'The Wedding Planner.'"
- "The Wedding Planner" premiered in 2001, and Goldsmith-Thomas secured Lopez a record-breaking $9 million salary for the film.
Jennifer Lopez began acting in the late '80s, but it wasn't until the 2000s that the already-famous popstar was hired for back-to-back starring roles in a string of romantic comedies, starting with 2001's "The Wedding Planner."
In a virtual panel for Variety's "Power of Women" series, Lopez reminisced with her former-agent-turned-coproducer Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas about how she had to fight against Latina stereotypes when she was auditioning earlier in her acting career."When I started, I would always go in for what they would call 'the maid,' 'the Rosie Perez-type role,' 'the dishwasher,'" Lopez said. "I was like 'I don't want to do that,' and I had to kind of break out of that and convince somebody to put me in the first romantic comedy, which was 'The Wedding Planner.'"
"They were buckling back on us," Lopez said. "And then [the movie's director Adam Shankman] came to one of my record signings and he said 'Give her whatever she wants.' The line was around the block.""The Wedding Planner" premiered in 2001, and Lopez's $9 million salary for the film broke a record at the time, making her the highest-paid Latina actress for any movie in history.
"It was the power of no," Goldsmith-Thomas said.
—Variety (@Variety) October 28, 2020Stereotyping isn't the only challenge Lopez faced early in her career. In a 2018 interview with InStyle, Lopez said a lot of people in the industry told her she should lose weight. Now Lopez is a global superstar, and runs film company Nuyorican Productions with Goldsmith-Thomas. Together they produced Lopez's two upcoming films, "Marry Me" and "The Godmother."
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