Twenty-seven years after her debut as a Fly Girl on In Living Color, actress, singer and dancer Jennifer Lopez is more than just a triple threat as a performer — she is also a producer, entrepreneur and force to be reckoned with in Hollywood. The entertainment icon, who juggles two shows on NBC and a Las Vegas residency, attributes her success to thinking big. In the latest issue of emmy magazine, readers are taken behind the scenes with the media mogul as she revs up for the second season of NBC's reality competition series World of Dance.
The award-winning official publication of the Television Academy hits newsstands June 5.
Over the course of her career, Lopez has starred in more than two dozen films and sold more than 80 million records globally. She is the first woman in the United States to have both the No. 1 album (J.Lo) and film (The Wedding Planner) in the same week.
In the emmy cover story "Life Unlimited," Lopez explains how she returned to television in 2011 as a judge on American Idol. "My agents, my lawyers, were like, 'Don't do that; your career will be over,'" she recalls. "But I'd just had kids, and I knew I had something to offer. I love music; I love performing. It was a huge platform — 20 million people tuning in. And I knew that they were going to see me for who I was."
Although her stint on Idol was a success, Lopez wasn't entirely committed to remaining in television. Then, in 2012, she reconnected with her one-time talent agent, Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas, who signed on to run Lopez's Nuyorican Productions. Together they approached NBC with a script for a crime drama called Shades of Blue. The series, which stars Lopez and Ray Liotta, premiered in 2016 and averaged 9.9 million viewers in its first season. Season three premieres on June 17.
Meanwhile, the reality competition series World of Dance, which premiered in 2017, became the most-watched, new summer alternative series in 10 years. The two shows' outstanding successes reflect the production prowess and creative mind of Lopez, who learned the importance of a single marketable moment from a Hollywood legend.
"I was lucky to work with amazing people from early in my career," she says. "Like Jack Nicholson [in the 1996 film Blood and Wine]. He'd say, 'Make a moment of your shot.' So I started thinking that way," said Lopez. "It's just that mentality of doing things on a level that no one else is thinking about. You've got to think bigger. I was able to be the artist but also think more like the director or producer; and that combination became, for me, kind of the secret sauce."
"For many years," says Goldsmith-Thomas, "people judged her. 'Oh, she's a dancer; she can't sing.' 'She's a singer; she can't act.' They marginalized her because she does so many things. Well, the people who criticized her the most are now in her wake."
Additional feature highlights from the new issue include:
Emmy, the official publication of the Television Academy, goes behind the scenes of the industry for a unique insider's view. It showcases the scope of television and profiles the people who make TV happen, from the stars of top shows to the pros behind the cameras, covering programming trends and advances in technology. Honored consistently for excellence, emmy is a six-time Maggie Award winner as Best Trade Publication in Communications or the Arts and has collected 52 Maggies from the Western Publishing Association. Emmy is available on selected newsstands and at TelevisionAcademy.com for single print and digital copies as well as subscriptions.
Download the press release here.
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