EXCLUSIVE: J.Lo Engaged to Ben Affleck

Nov. 10, 2002 -- Jennifer Lopez has confirmed that she and Hollywood leading man Ben Affleck are engaged.

The pair met last December while filming the upcoming gangster movie Gigli, which they co-star in. Their romance became public this summer when they were photographed kissing in public on numerous occasions.

During an interview with Primetime's Diane Sawyer, airing on Wednesday night, Lopez was at first coy on the marriage question, laughing and saying only that, "We're very, um, secure with our relationship."

But a few minutes later, during a break to change tape, Lopez thought a minute, called Affleck, and then said they had decided to go on the record.

Sawyer then asked, "Are you engaged?" and Lopez replied, "Yes."

A 'Beautiful' Proposal

Lopez, 32, said Affleck's proposal was "traditional, but also in a very spectacular way, as of course Ben would do it."

She added: "It was very, very beautiful."

She showed Sawyer the engagement ring Affleck gave her — a pink diamond on a platinum band.

Asked how she would describe Affleck to somebody who had never met him, Lopez said, "I'd probably say that he is brilliantly smart, loving, charming, affectionate. And I just admire him in every way. I respect him. I feel like he teaches me things."

But before she got to know him, she had thought he was just one of the typical Hollywood "playboy types, skirt chasers," she said, adding, "I've told him, too. He knows."

'Same Kind of Background'

She said she realizes people might view her and Affleck as an unlikely couple.

"We've talked about this so many times," she said. "And we talked about how people kind of see him with one type of person and me with another type of person, and the two of us together is like 'How did that happen?,' and how we're probably more alike and from the same kind of background and, you know, same kind of upbringing and same kind of family and same kind of house."

Lopez said she is a romantic at heart.

"I am such a kind of artist in that way, you know, just such a flutter bug in that way," she said. "Where it's just like, you know, the idea of love and fairy tales and romance and all that."

Asked how she and Affleck plan to juggle their hectic schedules, Lopez said: "We have the next, almost, year planned out already of, like, what he's doing, what I'm doing, where we're going to go with each other, who's going to not work at this time. … You really have to plan your life that way if you want to have a relationship in this business."

Lopez's first marriage, to model Ojani Noa in 1997, lasted a year. She split from her second husband, dancer Cris Judd, this June. Their divorce will be finalized in January.

This time around, things are different, Lopez said. Her feelings for Affleck are "bigger and realer" and "totally different" from anything she has felt before, she said.

Lopez also had a high-profile relationship with hip hop mogul Sean "P. Diddy" Combs. Affleck, 30, who has never been married, dated Gwyneth Paltrow.

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