Real-Life Hustlers? Jennifer Lopez Considered Being A Stripper Before Career Took Off

JEnnifer Lopez stripping in hustlers 2019

Jennifer Lopez has been back in the news this week, thanks to the “gift” of an outfit she wore to the Golden Globes, but she was at the event to begin with not to be fashionable but because she was in the big female-led flick Hustlers in 2019. While doing press during awards season for the film, the popular actress and singer admitted there was a time in her life that she did consider stripping as a profession.

Speaking about her early roots in the industry, Jennifer Lopez recently reflected on how stripping very nearly came into her life well before Hustlers hit the big screen (and made plenty of moolah).

I did [consider it]. There was a moment in my life when my friends, who were also dancers, told me about making thousands of dollars at clubs in New Jersey. They said, ‘You won’t need to be topless.’ It sounded awfully good when I was broke and eating pizza every day, but I never did it.

It’s always interesting to hear major celebrities talk about the time in their lives when they were unknowns and struggling in a creative field. Interestingly, one option for Jennifer Lopez happened to be that she could get into stripping. Years later, this profession came back into her life for Hustlers and she actually managed to master the craft enough that she could put on a memorable performance in the 2019 movie.

In fact, prior to the release of Hustlers, Jennifer Lopez detailed all the time and effort it took to get into the role of Ramona. Some of this was learning the art of pole dancing, but some of this was just learning how to play “someone this dark” and “complicated." She also detailed in her interview with W Magazine:

I was a little nervous about doing this movie because I had never played someone this dark or complicated. I liked that Ramona, the character I play, and the other strippers were looked at as equals to their patrons, the guys on Wall Street. Ramona reminded me of that girlfriend we all have who is exciting but can also get you into trouble. You always miss that friend when she’s gone, but when you get together, you worry you might find yourself in some crazy situation. That’s Ramona.

Lopez’s partner, Alex Rodriguez, was fully supportive of her in the role. There was that time he got Jennifer Lopez a stripper cake to celebrate Hustlers. In addition, more recently on the Golden Globes red carpet he also talked about the added benefit of Lopez having to practice, telling Ryan Seacrest ahead of that event that the couple did have to keep a pole in the master bedroom “for six months” as she worked on the movie.

Related: 5 Stripper Movies Worth Streaming In Honor Of Jennifer Lopez's Hustlers

In fact Jennifer Lopez was pretty open about the work it took to get into shape and figure out how to learn the art of pole dancing for the new movie.

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Ultimately Hustlers was no cake walk once Jlo signed up for it, but she tackled it like she's tackled a lot of corners of the entertainment industry since her start in My Little Girl way back in 1986. Next up you can catch her back on the big screen and using multiple skill sets as she plays a singer jilted at Madison Square Garden ahead of her wedding and marries a person in the crowd instead in 2020's Marry Me. Although there may be no pole dancing in this one, it will be nice to see the actress get back to her rom-com roots.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Reality TV fan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. Theme park junkie. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.