Jennifer Lopez is opening up about diversity in Hollywood, and candidly revealing that there are certain roles she’s hasn’t been considered for due to her Hispanic heritage.
Lopez made the admission in a candid new interview with NBC Latino, where Jennifer spoke openly about the struggles of being a Latina actress in Hollywood.
“It’s a difficult situation,” Lopez said of Hollywood’s current lack of diversity, which recently hit the headlines after the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences were slammed for not nominated actors of diverse ethnicity in major acting categories for the 88th Academy Awards. “[It’s] something that has been going on for a long time,” Jennifer said.
Lopez confessed in the candid new interview that she’s “struggled” with diversity throughout her lengthy career, which first began when she was cast as a Fly Girl dancer on the series In Living Color in the early 1990s, and revealed that there are certain roles that she’s missed out on because she’s a Latina actress.
“I am a Latin so there are certain roles that I’m not considered for and my name never even comes up,” Jennifer Lopez candidly admitted.
However, Jennifer spoke more highly of television as a whole in the interview and praised the small screen in particular for its recent strides in diverse casting. “You’re seeing more diversity on television that reflects society,” Lopez revealed, admitting that she feels television “has always been at the forefront of pushing those boundaries.”
But despite admitting that there are some roles she’s not even considered for due to her Latin heritage, Lopez admitted in the interview that she’s proud of her roots and would never hide her background in order to get a role on the silver or small screen.
“I’ve never ever tried to hide the fact that I was a Puerto Rican from the Bronx. Everybody knew it right off the bat,” Jennifer said, “It’s not something I felt would be a detriment, it made me special and who I am.”
While Lopez is opening up about diversity in 2016, Jennifer previously got candid about her heritage in an in-depth interview with People En Español ten years ago in 2006, where Jennifer confessed that she’s proud to be a poster girl for the Latin community and is working hard to bring more Hispanic workers into the industry.
“It’s harder for us [Hispanics]. It definitely is,” Jennifer candidly confessed in 2006 revealed that she’s knows that she “represent[s] a whole culture” due to her celebrity status. “That’s why I’m more happy now because I’m more conscious of the choices I make,” Lopez said, citing her production company, Nuyorican Productions, as one of her best career choices to date.
“Nuyorican Productions, is all about that. We want to employ Latino actors, we want to employ Latino directors, we want to hire writers who know that world as a Latino writer; that’s important to me,” Lopez stated, “I’ve never tried to hide the fact that I’m Latina.”
“I think that’s why Hispanics are like ‘She’s ours; she’s out there, but she belongs to us’ and that’s true,” Jennifer said at the time, admitting that she feels like she “belongs” to the Hispanic community. “I am theirs. I do belong to them – that’s who I am,” Jennifer said.
“Don’t expect anybody to hand you anything. We have to work for everything in this life,” Jennifer Lopez continued to People En Español. “It’s one thing to sit back and say ‘There’s not this and there’s not that for us’. If I would’ve said that, I wouldn’t have gotten to where I’ve gotten.”
What do you think of Jennifer Lopez’s comments regarding diversity in Hollywood?
[Photo by Angela Weiss/Getty Images]