Double threats! Musicians can top the charts and dominate their industry, but their artistry is taken to another level when they break into acting.
For Jennifer Lopez, her music and acting career went hand in hand after she landed the title role in the 1997 biopic Selena. While she soon became known for her hit songs, her passion was always acting.
The Hustlers star told Vanity Fair in 2020 that she never considered giving up on her dream. “Once I started, no,” she said. “I always felt like this is what I wanted to do. It was this or nothing. There was not really an option for me. It’s just what I love.”
Lopez learned to balance acting, singing and a slew of other opportunities as she skyrocketed to fame, but she kept coming back to her true calling.
“I would say dancing and music are my first loves, but acting is the love of my life. You have your first love and the love of your life, and acting is the love of my life,” she told the outlet. “I feel like every time I take on a role, it is only about becoming somebody that I’m not. When they go in and see me, they don’t see J. Lo — they see the maid, they see the stripper, they see who they’re supposed to see because I’m able to still give you the suspension of disbelief. That is the challenge of it for me, but also the thrill of it for me.”
Lady Gaga had a similar trajectory. Although she first became known as a pop superstar, being an actress was her initial goal.
“I always wanted to be an actress — much more than I wanted to be a singer,” she noted during a January 2022 appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! “I just always wanted to be an actress, but I really was terrible at auditioning.”
Despite Gaga’s immense success as an actress, she explained in January 2022 why she will never stop trying to be better.
“Even if the title is leading role [or] lead actress, I still will find a way to follow because I ultimately think that if you are done learning, you’re done performing,” she told Deadline at the time. “There’s no synthesis then. You’re not taking anything in and putting anything out. You just think that you have it, and that’s not what I believe in. I believe that you die a student.”
Scroll through the gallery below for more musicians turned actors: