The Rise & Rise of Jennifer Lopez

If Jenny from the block thought she had a lot back in 2002, then she’d be amazed by what she has now. Jennifer Lopez’s career has continued on an unmistakably upwards trajectory for over two decades and continues to do so today. From humble beginnings, J.Lo has become one of the most recognizable people on earth with successful careers in music, film, and television. With global number one singles and films which have grossed hundreds of millions of dollars, it has been quite a journey for Lopez.

Born in New York City on July 24, 1969, Jennifer Lynn Lopez had humble beginnings. She spent her younger days in a small New York apartment with her two Puerto Rican parents and a younger sister, Lynda. From a young age, Lopez was drawn to performance. She attended singing and dancing lessons at the age of five and later took part in gymnastics and athletics at the Catholic schools she attended. For Lopez, the movies came before the music. Her first role came while she was still in high school in a small budget drama called My Little Girl.

After finishing high school, Lopez briefly attended Baruch College in New York before dropping out to further her career in the entertainment industry. She was a backup dancer to Janet Jackson in the early-1990s before leaving to land some smaller film roles. She starred opposite Jack Nicholson in 1996’s Blood & Wine before her breakout part as the titular character in Selena, a biopic of the famous singer, Selena Quintanilla. A voice role in Antz followed before Lopez turned her attention to music.


Jennifer Lopez’s first two forays into the world of music were extraordinarily successful. On The 6 and J.Lo, each sold over eight million units worldwide, some hugely impressive figures for an artist’s first two records. In amongst the release of two studio albums and a tour, Lopez still found the time to continue her film career. Major parts continued to come for the star including the lead role opposite Matthew McConaughey in The Wedding Planner and alongside Ralph Fiennes in Maid in Manhattan.

The early-2000s were amongst the high points of Jennifer Lopez’s fame and popularity, but it wouldn’t last. Her musical career had hit something of a roadblock after the poor reception of her third album, 2002’s This Is Me… Then and her time on screen proved equally damaging to her career. 2003 saw the release of Gigli, a romantic comedy starring her then-fiancé, Ben Affleck. The film was a box office flop and was critically panned across the board, receiving just 6% on Rotten Tomatoes.


In some ways, these problems appeared to help Jennifer Lopez. She received a much-needed a break from the spotlight before an impressive return to form several years later. Her 2011 single, On the Floor, scooped the number one spot in a dozen different countries and is still the best-selling track of her career. The single coincided with a major television role she landed a part as a judge on American Idol. Lopez has judged for five seasons on the show, bringing her in as much as $20 million per season according to Forbes.

Her return to the top of the charts and successful television roles once again catapulted Jennifer Lopez to the realms of global fame. This has helped J.Lo to land a major Las Vegas residency show at Planet Hollywood Restaurant & Casino. According to a research piece from Betway, the casino site found that the singer makes an average sum of over $466,000 during each of her 108 shows. The run is due to end in November 2018 but Jennifer Lopez: All I Have is already one of the most successful residency shows in the illustrious history of Vegas entertainment.


Not content on simply conquering the film and music industries, Jennifer Lopez has branched out into other areas during her illustrious career. She was one of the first major celebrities to launch their own fragrance. ‘Glow by JLo’ was released back in 2002, the first of eight fragrances which the singer has released during her time in the spotlight. Glow and the perfumes which followed have proven to be hugely successful for Lopez, earning her upwards of $50 million according to The Daily Mail. There was also the singer’s fashion brand, J.Lo by Jennifer Lopez as well as the numerous modeling and endorsement campaigns over the years.

From humble beginnings to multi-million dollar movies and now known for being one of the most successful show stars in Las Vegas (KNTV, 2018), Jennifer Lopez has had quite a career. Few would have expected the young TV movie actress to achieve so much in the music business, but it seems that Lopez’s talents know no bounds. From her beloved television work to her record-breaking fragrance range, Lopez continues to showcase her talents in whichever area she tries. Not bad for a girl from the block.


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