Jennifer Lopez Is Our First Real Latina Rom-Com Queen

Jennifer Lopez’s life and profession have taken the world on an unforgettable roller-coaster journey. We have witnessed the ups, downs, and sudden twists in between. She could not at all times be a favorite among critics, however Lopez has continued to provide movies via her firm Nuyorican Productions, elevating herself to celeb royalty. As she juggles the various crowns she wears, one which deserves the highlight is her position in basically being our first Latina rom-com queen.

Certain, a few of her earlier movies, like 2002’s “Maid in Manhattan,” had been criticized for perpetuating Latina stereotypes (and 2003’s “Gigli,” which she costarred in with Ben Affleck, was chewed up and spit out by movie critics for simply not being humorous). However regardless of the naysayers, Lopez has by no means given up her spot as a rom-com star. The 2005 romantic comedy “Monster-in-Legislation,” which she stars in alongside Jane Fonda, adopted these much less fascinating movies and have become certainly one of her highest-grossing films to date.

Lopez is to the 2000s what Meg Ryan is to the Eighties and ’90s. Her comedic timing is at all times on level, and mixing it along with her vulnerability has created a recipe for fulfillment within the rom-com style. From 2001’s “The Wedding ceremony Planner,” which grossed $94 million worldwide, to 2004’s “Shall We Dance?” which brought in $170 million on the field workplace, and up to date movies like 2022’s “Marry Me,” which racked up $50 million, Lopez has continued to solidify herself as a rom-com queen. Different Latina actors have dipped their toe within the style and carried out nicely: suppose Salma Hayek in 1997’s “Fools Rush In” alongside Matthew Perry, and Eva Mendes in 2005’s “Hitch” alongside Will Smith. Nevertheless, the Puerto Rican actor continues to stretch the bounds of the rom-com characters she portrays. In a single position, she’s fighting a tough mother-in-law, and within the subsequent, she’s toting weapons and fight boots, as she did in 2022’s “Shotgun Wedding.”

The 54-year-old multitalented star would not look forward to the alternatives to return both — she creates them for herself. She not too long ago dropped $20 million to provide 2024’s “This Is Me… Now: A Love Story,” an Amazon authentic showcase that coincided along with her first studio album in a decade. By means of breathtaking choreography, star-studded cameos, awe-inspiring costumes, and scene adjustments, Lopez takes viewers on a journey via her love life, a sizzling matter within the public eye for years. And, after all, she throws in some comedy along with her therapist, who’s performed by longtime good friend and fellow Bronx native Fat Joe. Regardless of the tough criticism and low scores, the musical movie was necessary for Lopez to element her love life in her personal manner, not the media’s.

General, Lopez has introduced in approximately $1 billion in gross revenue for her rom-com movies. She is staking her declare in an area that lacks Latine illustration by a protracted shot. In 2019, the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative launched a report that confirmed the low percentages of Latine contribution on digicam and behind the scenes. In partnership with Eva Longoria’s UnbeliEVAble Leisure, the report discovered that solely seven p.c of movies from 2019 featured a lead or colead Hispanic/Latino actor.

In different phrases, Lopez — for greater than 20 years — has carved out illustration the place Latinas are almost nonexistent. Whereas the critics could lay on her closely and unapologetically, we can not deny that in the case of rom-coms, she’s doing it larger and higher than every other Latina actor. She is laughing all the way in which to the financial institution and slowly and steadily bumping up these insultingly low percentages. There is not any doubt that Lopez has rewritten historical past and solidified a path in movie that different Latina actors are positive to observe.

Zayda Rivera is a POPSUGAR contributor. She has been an expert author for greater than 20 years. Z is a Reiki Grasp Instructor, a yoga and Zumba teacher, a mindfulness and meditation information, a tarot reader, and a religious mentor.

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