Jennifer Lopez and Maluma scorch on the cover of Billboard Magazine‘s 2020 Latin Power Players issue.
And they are apt picks.
Individually, they’ve blazed a trail in music and, in a testament to their multi-hyphenate skillset, are now joining forces on the big screen.
Forthcoming movie ‘Marry Me’ (due in theaters Valentine’s Day 2021) sees the duo fuse narrative with an original soundtrack of all new songs. The latter of which they previewed in the form of ‘Pa Ti’ and ‘Lonely.’
Jennifer Lopez on Latino representation in film: “It’s not common. I’ve been doing movies for 25 years now, and I’ve done 40-something movies. There have been three to four movies in my entire career where I’ve had Latino co-stars.”
Lopez on the catharsis of playing a pop star in Marry Me: “I was playing [a character] trying to find someone who understood her and accepted her for all of what her life was but also just saw her as a person. Like a real girl. Which is what I am. People see you as this thing, this star. They forget you’re just a girl and want to live and laugh and be normal.”
Lopez in defense of the rom-com genre: “First of all, romantic comedies are not light movies. They’re necessary, beautiful movies, and I don’t know why people feel like they have to put them down when everybody enjoys them so much…It’s a very sweet movie, but it’s still a movie about life.”
Maluma on the need to take Latin music to the next level: “There isn’t a new salsa kid right now that you say ‘This kid can make it.’ I don’t think they think they’re cool. We need that merengue, that salsa – someone who can take those genres to another level. Everybody wants to sing reggaetón, and I really feel we’re missing out.”
Maluma on bringing down barriers for Latin artists: “It has been difficult to get into the American market. But people like Jennifer – who has been working a long time to get people to understand who we are as a community – opened a lot of doors for a lot of artists. I feel grateful for Jennifer.”
Lopez on the message behind her Super Bowl performance: “It was monumental for me. It was about [putting on] the best, most exciting show that I could, but there were a lot of messages in there — for women, for little girls, for Latinos here in the United States and everything we’ve been going through [politically]. We have to stand up for ourselves. That’s why I said, “Let me hear you, women! Let me hear you, Latinos! It’s time to get loud!” Our vote matters. We matter.”
Lopez on representing her Latin identity: “Everybody knows that I’m a Puerto Rican girl from the Bronx. It’s not something I ever tried to hide — or ever thought that I should hide — so I can get ahead. I always felt that individuality is what made me different from every other actress that was out there when I first started. I feel it’s the secret to my success.”
Maluma on representing his Latin identity: “I have a tattoo that says “Medellín.” (He opens his shirt to show it.) I just want to be known around the world as Colombian. Everybody is always saying, “When are you going to start singing in English?” Why am I going to do it if I’m doing concerts in Romania, Israel, Morocco, the States, and they’re singing in Spanish? I want to bring my essence around the world. And my essence is singing in Spanish.”
Lopez on taking time for things that matter: “One of the fears of artists who perform is, “If I stop, it’s going to go away.” And it doesn’t. You need to have a little bit more faith in yourself and know that when you’re ready to put out the next album, even if it takes two years, it’s OK. You have to take time for things that matter: your kids, your family.”
Lopez and Maluma on their partnership:
“I think the J.Lo-Maluma movement is just starting. After Marry Me, I think things are going to change a lot.” – Maluma
“Maybe we’ll do a tour together.” – Lopez
Maluma on what the future holds: “We’re making history right now as a Latin community and I feel very proud of being part of this big, big movement that we’re having right now.”