Jennifer Lopez has been waiting forever to land in Oscar voters’ good graces, and “Hustlers” just might be the vehicle to get her there.
The multi-hyphenate entertainer is receiving glowing reviews for her performance as a stripper who turns the tables on her wealthy Wall Street clients in the buzzy female-fronted crime drama that hits theaters this week.
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The singer became emotional when she heard that critics were drumming up the Oscar buzz ― a first for Lopez in her decadeslong career ― during a sit-down with “Today” host Hoda Kotb on SiriusXM radio Tuesday.
“I’ve just been working hard for so long, for my whole life. It’s nice,” a teary-eyed Lopez said after Kotb read a sampling of the reviews aloud. “Sorry, you guys know I’m emotional!”
“I was literally sitting in my bed yesterday and they were sending me all the reviews. I could not believe it,” she continued. “I was crying, me and my girlfriend of 20 years were sitting there and she was trying to film me. I was like, ‘Oh my God.’ You work hard your whole life and you wonder if anybody notices in a sense, on that level, to be in that conversation. You have dreams when you’re a little girl of being [at the Oscars], you know what I mean?”
While Lopez has earned a slew of awards throughout her career, most recently the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the 2018 MTV Video Music Awards, the major trophies have proved to be more elusive.
Despite her Oscar-worthy performance playing Selena Quintanilla-Pérez in the 1997 biopic about the late pop singer, which earned Lopez a Golden Globe nomination, critics haven’t been as praiseworthy of her more recent roles in lighter fare like “The Boy Next Door” and “Second Act.”
The nominations, however, are still a few months away. For now, Lopez is just flattered to be considered.
“Just to talk about it is amazing,” she said. “And for people to be saying that is nice.”