b. 24 July 1970, the Bronx, New York City, New York, USA. Of Puerto Rican descent, Lopez enjoyed great success as an actress before emerging in the late 90s as one of the new wave of Latin pop stars, alongside leading male singers Ricky Martin and Enrique Iglesias. As a child Lopez appeared in musical theatre, before making her film debut as a 16 year old in the movie My Little Girl. Her break into television came in 1990 when she won a dance contest to become a Fly Girl on the Fox television comedy series In Living Color. Further television work ensued, including appearances in the series Second Chances and Hotel Malibu (credited on both as Melinda Lopez), the short-lived South Central and a television movie Nurses On The Line: The Crash Of Flight 7 (1993). She made her first major big screen appearance opposite Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson in 1995's Money Train, before working with director Gregory Nava on My Family, Mi Familia. Her experience on the latter led indirectly to the high-profile role of murdered Tejano star Selena Quintanilla in the 1997 biopic Selena. Now considered a major player in Hollywood, Lopez's acclaimed appearance opposite George Clooney in 1998's Out Of Sight made her the highest paid Latin actress in history.
However, it was her role in Selena that led to the revival of her music career. Major label backing, heavyweight producers of the calibre of Emilio Estefan, Rodney Jerkins and Sean "Puffy" Combs, and the attendant crossover success of Martin and Iglesias, made 1999's On The 6 one of the summer's most hotly anticipated releases. The album, named after the train line the young Lopez used to take into the city, was a predictable commercial success. The first single "If You Had My Love" (produced by Jerkins), topped the US charts for five weeks. The follow-up, "Waiting For Tonight", was also a transatlantic hit. The album's other tracks, most of which were co-written by executive producer Corey Rooney, included "Feelin' So Good" (featuring cameos from rappers Fat Joe and Big Punisher ), a duet with Marc Anthony on "No Me Ames" and the Trackmasters-produced "Should Have Never". Lopez remained in the media spotlight through her troubled romantic dalliance with Combs. Her chart-topping sophomore set J.Lo was premiered by the transatlantic hit single, "Love Don't Cost A Thing", a rare quality moment on an album full of hackneyed urban beats and very little Latin flair. Further hit singles lifted from the album included "Play" and a remix of "I'm Real" featuring rapper Ja Rule.
ALBUMS: On The 6 (Work/Epic 1999), J.Lo (Epic 2001), J To Tha L-O! The Remixes (Epic 2002).
VIDEOS: Feelin' So Good (Epic 2000).
FILMS: My Little Girl (1986), My Family, Mi Familia (1995), Money Train (1995), Jack (1996), Blood And Wine (1997), Selena (1997), Anaconda (1997), U Turn (1997), Out Of Sight (1998), Antz voice only (1998), Thieves (1999), The Cell (2000), The Wedding Planner (2001), Angel Eyes (2001)..