Jennifer Lopez is everywhere — from the big screen to the radio to the TV … and of course, the tabloids.
Her rise to superstardom was full of controversy, due to her daring outfits and her very public romance with rap mogul and musician Sean "Puffy" Combs, aka P. Diddy.
Their two-year relationship played itself out in the national spotlight, especially after Combs and Lopez were taken into police custody after a Dec. 27, 1999, shooting at a Manhattan nightclub. Lopez was never charged. Combs was later acquitted of all gun and bribery charges. But by the time it was all over, so was their relationship.
In an interview with ABCNEWS, Lopez says it wasn't the spotlight that ended their romance, adding that she thinks celebrities can have meaningful and long relationships.
"I think you can, absolutely," the actress-singer told Good Morning America. "I mean, the media is not what ended mine and Sean's relationship. It had nothing to do with it, and if we wanted to be together for the rest of our lives, we would have done that, with or without the media."
Lopez says she was happy that Combs was acquitted.
"I mean, those situations are hard for anybody, but, of course, the media adds stress and anxiety to it for you because I think what people forget is that you are a real human being with feelings," said Lopez, adding that it was a difficult time for both her and Combs. "It was super-hard on him to have to go through something as horrible as that, and all I can say is that I'm glad it turned out, you know, the way it was supposed to."
But even though the trial is over and the romance between her and Combs is over, everyone is still very interested in "J.Lo," as many fans call her.
A lawyer for Death Row Records founder Marion "Suge" Knight, a long-standing rival of Combs, says one of Knight's companies is producing a video on Lopez titled J.Lo Uncut: The Real Story.
"It's hard, and it's not something that people really want to hear you complain about when you're making a bunch of money and you're in a movie when a lot of people want to do that," said Lopez. "So, you know I don't complain about it. I just try to deal with it and it not to say that it doesn't get hard. It does, but, you know, it comes with the territory."
From the Bronx to the Big Screen
While growing up in New York City borough of the Bronx, Lopez watched West Side Story over and over again, hoping to be the next generation's Rita Moreno. She began her career dancing in the Fly Girl ensemble of the Fox comedy series In Living Color.
Now, the kid from the Bronx is topping the music charts and she's a leading lady on the silver screen.
Her latest project, a movie called Angel Eyes, is a love story about leaving one's past behind.
"I was really drawn to the love story in it," said Lopez. "Two people from kind of tragic backgrounds in a way who never were able to move on from their past, and through the love that they have for each other, they are able to heal each other and move on, you know, and actually have a life after so many years and leave the past behind them."
Lopez performs her own stunts in the film. "Well, you know to me, it is not that big a deal because I was always very athletic. So to me the athletic stuff is fun. I'm like, 'Let me jump over the fence, please.'"
The 31-year-old, who is known for sporting sexy dresses to the Oscars and next to nothing in her music videos, says staying in shape is no easy task, especially with her busy schedule.
"You know, I push myself and I push myself, and every once in a while, I hit a wall, I get burned out, I get tired, I need a few days off, but on the most part, for the most part, I love what I do. So I push myself, you know? I do. It is part of who I am. So I really think for me right now, it's about finding a balance and kind of taking care of myself and doing what I love and not going overboard."
She's also agreed to a deal with NBC for a series of music specials, the first of which is scheduled to air this fall. The network is also developing a sitcom loosely based on her family and the neighborhood in which she grew up.
Despite the spotlight and the demanding schedule, Lopez says she is enjoying her life and her career and she doesn't plan on slowing down.
"It's fun all the time. It's a wonderful thing, but just like anything, it's life. It's real. I'm human, and things, you know, there's ups and downs, but it makes the ups so much better."