Jennifer Lopez

Jennifer Lopez Biography

One of the extremely popular entertainers of today, Jennifer Lopez has shown her versatility to the world as a dancer, actor and singer. She is still considered by many as the most fascinating woman in the entertainment industry. She is also one of the richest celebrities with an estimated net worth of $250 million. With the dream of becoming a "famous movie star", Lopez left her hometown for New York and started her journey as a dancer. Soon her beauty and talent was discovered and thus, began her film career. Later on, when she gained fair amount of success as an actor, she directed her attention towards singing. In no time, her songs became huge hits and were charting at no.1 in America. Her sensational dances in the music videos rapidly enhanced the sales and got her a celebrity status. However, as she remained in constant public attention, her relationships served as a fodder for celebrity gossips. She married three times - two of which lasted for a year or even less. She was married for the longest time to singer Marc Anthony with whom she has two children, but then, like her previous marriages, it could not last forever.

How did the story begin?

Born on July 24, 1970, in New York's Bronx to Puerto Rican parents, Jennifer never wanted an ordinary life. Although her mother, a kindergarten teacher, and her father, a computer specialist, wanted her to study, Jennifer was having none of it. She wanted to sing, to dance, to act -- in short, she wanted to be famous.

Childhood & Early Life

  • Jennifer is the second of the three children born to Guadalupe Rodriguez and David Lopez. She was five when her parents sent her to singing and dancing classes, and when she grew up, she was enrolled at the Preston High School.

  • At 17, she landed a place at Manhattan's Dance Studio, dividing her time between the Studio and high school.

  • In the final year of high school, she sought several small film projects and landed herself a role in a low-budget film ‘My Little Lady’ in 1986. She went to the ‘Baruch College’ but later dropped out, with the dream of becoming a movie star.

  • Her parents, however, did not approve of the career she chose for herself. This caused her to move out of her family and live separately in Manhattan.

Career

  • After a brief period of work as dancer and actor in some stage musicals, she won a national competition in 1990 and earned a role as one of the ‘Fly Girls’ in the Fox comedy series ‘In Living Color’.

  • In 1991, she got her first big break when she was chosen as a dancer on the US TV show, In Living Colour.

  • She appeared in some other television series, before debuting in Hollywood with the film ‘My Family’ in 1995. The film enjoyed reasonable commercial and critical success.

  • Her breakthrough film came in 1997, in which she played the title role was ‘Selena’, biopic of the singer Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, who died very young. Thanks to this film, Jennifer Lopez received the coveted seven-figure salary enjoyed by so few in Hollywood.

  • The same year she played one of the lead roles in the popular movies ‘Anaconda’ and ‘Blood and Wine’. She also starred in the crime film ‘Out of Sight’ in 1998, opposite Hollywood star George Clooney.

  • Her burgeoning film career however, came at a price. "When I was doing Selena, I thought, 'God, I really miss singing and dancing and sharing that with the public," she recalls.

  • One of her contacts from her In Living Colour days, mindful of the fact that she wanted to get back to her musical roots, engineered a meeting with Tommy Mottola, the president of Sony Records. Impressed by her demo, he signed her up, and in 1998 she started work on her debut album, On The 6.

  • In 1999, she made her debut in music with the album ‘On the 6’, from which ‘If You Had My Love’ became a huge success. The album went platinum in the States within months of hitting the stores.

  • Her second big hit came in 2000 with the single ‘Waiting for Tonight’ and the same year, she starred in two films ‘The Cell’ and ‘Enough’.

  • In 2001, her singing career as well as her success reached new heights with her album ‘J. Lo’, the copies of which sold like hotcakes. J Lo was released in January 2001, with the single My Love Don't Cost A Thing, hitting the number one spot in the UK. The same year she starred in the commercially successful film ‘The Wedding Planner’.

  • She starred with Ben Affleck in the film ‘Gigli’ and in 2004 she played the female lead in the film ‘Shall We Dance?’ opposite Richard Gere.

  • In 2007, she starred with her husband Marc Anthony in the biographical film ‘El Cantante’ which was a huge critical success. That year, she also released her Spanish album ‘Como Ama una Mujer’ which was well-received and performed good in the pop charts.

  • Now a celebrity, Lopez was invited as one of the judges in the singing reality show ‘American Idol’ in their eleventh season in January 2012. However in July, she departed from the show, shortly after co-judge Steven Tyler left the show. The same month, she released one of her extremely hit albums, ‘Dance Again... the Hits’.

Major Works

  • Her single ‘If You Had My Love’, from her debut album ‘On the 6’ reached no. 1 on the Billboard 100 and was regarded as one of the most ‘infectious singles’ released that year.

  • Another song from the same album ‘Waiting for Tonight’ became hugely popular and is considered her best single till date. It reached number 8 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and also earned her a Grammy nomination.

  • Jennifer's second album, J.Lo, debuted at #1 on the charts, and we're still singing along to "Love Don't Cost a Thing" and "I'm Real".

  • The film ‘Selena’ (1997) in which she portrayed the title character, received amazing critical reviews. Made with a budget of $20 million, the film grossed $35 million at the box-office.

Love Life

  • Jennifer Lopez married Cuban waiter and model Ojani Noa, in February 1997, which lasted less than a year and the couple divorced in January 1998.

  • Her next boyfriend was Sean Combs, aka P Diddy. In December 1999, the couple were arrested in connection with a nightclub shooting in the Big Apple, although Jennifer was later released. At the time the pop diva insisted she would stand by her man, but the couple's spokespeople released a statement on Valentine's Day 2001 announcing they had called time on the romance. Puffy was cleared of all criminal charges soon afterward.

  • On September 29, 2001, she married actor and choreographer Cris Judd, a former back-up dancer she began dating soon after her break-up with P Diddy. However the relationship soured after less than a year and she filed for divorce in June 2002.

  • In 2002, she started dating with Ben Affleck after the pair had worked together on Gigli, and they got engaged in November 2002. They, however, parted ways in January 2004.

  • Jennifer Lopez got married to actor, record producer, and singer-songwriter Marc Anthony on June 5, 2004, just four days after Marc's divorce from former Miss Universe Dayanara Torres became final. The couple had their first children, a twin, on February 22, 2008. In 2012, they filed for divorce.

  • From October 2011 to 2014, Jennifer Lopez dated Casper Smart, her former back-up dancer.

  • In 2019, Jennifer Lopez got engaged to Alex Rodriguez. The couple has been together since 2017.

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