Ask anyone who knows her in the entertainment industry and they'll tell you: Jennifer Lopez is the queen of the romantic comedy genre.
Of course, she's also a world music sensation, dancer and mother of two. But on screen, where she takes the lead, audiences can't get away from her character's journey to find love.
Milo Ventimiglia, who played her husband in the 2018 film "Act Two," told NBC News: "She's bigger than life, but in some ways she's the most connected person in the world on the big screen. "
Tyler Posey, who played her son in one of her most popular rom-coms, "The Handmaid of Manhattan," said she "has a weakness that makes rom-coms, rom-coms. People see it, recognize it, and fall in love with it." it it. "immediately".
Kate Currow, director of Lopez's latest romantic comedy "Marry Me," calls her the "perfect" leadership candidate.
The film, which opens Friday, is Lopez's first romantic comedy since 2018. Lopez stars as Latin pop star Cat Valdez, who, in a moment of emotional madness, marries a random audience member named Charlie Gilbert (Owen). Wilson) at a concert after learning that his fiancé Bastian (Maluma) was unfaithful.
"Only Jennifer can do that," says producer Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas. "You have to have someone with that charisma and that kind of stage presence."
As the movie unfolds, Kate and Charlie meet each other as unlikely newlyweds, trying to bridge the gap between their very different worlds and, of course, find true love.
Korol said the rom-com was never about "anything other than making a timeless movie about hope and escape from reality and love, and the related topics of social media, fame and loneliness," Korroll said. "It's also an event. It's a prom experience."
Lopez makes the movie look like the heroine of the party.
J Lo has yet to start her acting career, let alone lead a romantic comedy.
She started as a backup dancer for big names like New Kids on the Block and Janet Jackson before appearing in a handful of TV shows and movies. She later landed her first role as Selena in the 1997 biopic of the same name - a performance that was critically acclaimed and propelled her into the national spotlight. Then, in 1999, she released her debut album, "On the 6," cementing Lopez's triple threat in Hollywood.
By the late '90s, although her name had become a household name after the release of "Selina" and her music, Lopez had yet to star in romantic comedies — her only goal early in her Hollywood career.
"When I first started, one of the things I wanted to do was, 'Because I'm Puerto Rican, I'm Latin, and I wanted to be in a romantic comedy,'" Lopez, who was not available for an interview, told The Hollywood Reporter in November. 2019. Round table.
She continued, "I feel like all the women in romantic comedies always look the same, they're always white. I thought if I could do this and show that I'm every girl—because I'm a hopeless romantic, I'm just—I'm one professional woman, and I'm that stuff."
"I remember thinking, 'I need to be the lead in a romantic comedy,'" she added.
Her dream came true when she landed the lead role in the 2001 movie The Wedding Planner, co-starring Matthew McConaughey.
Scott Meslow, author of From Hollywood: Rise and Fall (and Rise Again), a romantic comedy that explores the beloved genre during the "golden age" of the 1990s and early 2000s.
"She had a real passion for romantic comedies, and her first role was 'The Wedding Planner', which a lot of actresses turned down. But it came and it was a huge success," said Meslow.
Many fans immediately felt connected to the character of Lopez on screen.
"I knew JLo was the lead in a romantic comedy before I even knew she was a dancer or singer," said 27-year-old Caitlin Goo.
Growing up, Jo, who is Asian American, said it was especially important to see someone like Lopez in her favorite genre of movies.