Jennifer Lopez recalled being typecast early on in her acting career during a recent interview with Variety.
She said people warned that she would be turned down for lead roles because of her ethnicity.
“Maybe 30 years ago, it was very ‘Oh, you’re the Latin girl. You’ll do Spanish roles; you’ll play maids; you’ll only be limited to this little box,'” Lopez said. “It’s about getting people in the business — the agents, the managers, the Tommy Mottolas of the world — to believe this girl can do more. But you have to prove yourself too.”
Her big break came when she starred in “Selena” at age 26 after being picked over 22,000 other actresses.
“There are so many smart, talented women out there, in front of and behind the camera, and I think we’re at a point where our voices are not stifled as much,” Lopez said.
Lopez produced and stars in the new movie “Hustlers” as the ringleader of a New York strip club during the 2008 financial crisis. Other featured actresses include Cardi B, Lizzo, Julia Stiles and Keke Palmer.
“Because of the #MeToo movement, it’s ‘We are equal, and we want to be treated that way.’ We’ve been making our own opportunities, and as you prove your worth and value to people, they can’t put you in a box. You hustle it into happening, right?”
“Hustlers” is scheduled to hit theaters on Sept. 13.