Jennifer Lopez has come a long way from her days as Jenny on The Block. To be sure, her ascendance to superstar was swift; the New York City native and East End resident burst onto the scene in the comedy realm as a bit player on “In Living Color” in 1991; she went on to pursue a wildly successful film career; she ventured into music in 1999; and today she has earned a spot in the rare pantheon of legit tastemakers, influencers and – probably among her greatest achievements – role models.
A true pop icon, JLo is often described as a triple threat entertainer. According to Wikipedia, her cumulative film gross is $3.1 billion, she has racked up estimated global sales of 70 million records, and, overall, is regarded as the most influential Latin entertainer in North America (in 2012, Forbes ranked her as the most powerful celebrity in the world).
And like any true legend, Lopez is a media magnet. This summer alone the paparazzi had enough fodder not only for Page Six, but lots of page ones, too.
Speaking of Page Six, The New York Post broke the story (and had the photos to prove it) that Lopez and equally-as-iconic Ben Affleck were up to some heavy necking at Nobu in Malibu. “The on-again flames appeared to only have eyes for each other,” wrote the Post. “In one photo, Lopez can be seen pulling Affleck in close as she clings to his shoulder and he moves in for a sweet kiss. The ‘Hustlers’ star is seen lovingly caressing her beau’s face in another shot as the superstars stare into each other’s eyes.”
Steamy stuff, but likely confusing for the East End set who all have been a titter about activity a little closer to home.
Lopez was garnering headlines for shenanigans related to some Hamptons real estate secured by former Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez and its, shall we say, coincidental proximity to Lopez’s own Hamptons estate.
According to TMZ, A-Rod rented the $5 million Bridgehampton mansion, a summer crib about a mile from Lopez’s Water Mill digs. This, says TMZ, is where the couple spent last summer with their kids, only months before announcing the dissolution of their three-year engagement.
Happenstance? That’s likely all it is because with the kind of cred Lopez enjoys, she can simply eschew the salacious headlines. Not one to simply lounge around, she’s one busy girl.
According to Deadline, Lopez’s Nuyorican Productions, co-run by her producing partner Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas and supported by partner Benny Medina, is reportedly developing a slew of feature films, television series and scripted and unscripted content that will have “(an) emphasis on projects that support diverse female actors, writers and filmmakers.”
Netflix first announced two projects, both starring Lopez, including The Mother which is directed by Niki Caro (Mulan) and follows a deadly female assassin who comes out of hiding to teach her daughter how to survive, and The Cipher, based on the novel by Isabella Ojeda Maldonado.
Last summer, they upped the ante announcing that Lopez also will star in, and produce, the sci-fi thriller Atlas.
Based on Leo Sardarian’s script and directed by Brad Peyton, the much-anticipated film follows Atlas, a woman tasked with saving humanity in a future where AI henchmen are convinced that saving the world means ending humanity. Atlas is on top of her game, though, and reluctantly realizes that to save the world, she must team up with – you guessed it – another AI.
“I am excited to announce my new partnership with Netflix,” Lopez said. “Elaine, Benny and I believe there is no better home for us than a forward leaning content creation company that seeks to defy conventional wisdom and directly market to the millions across the globe who no longer view art and entertainment with the kind of boundaries and limitations of the past.”
As one can imagine, Netflix is giddy to have such a luminary among their ranks.
“Jennifer is a singular talent whose creativity and vision have captivated audiences and inspired the next generation around the world,” said Bela Bajaria, Netflix Head of Global TV. “For years she and the team at Nuyorican have brought a distinctive voice to entertainment, and I’m looking forward to working with her and the team to create new series for our members to love.”
Yes, we ARE prepared to be captivated by this girl who has squarely scoped out her place on the block.