Abraham: We have to be more Mexican than the Mexicans and more American than the Americans, both at the same time! It's exhausting!Selena
is a 1997 biography about the life of Tejano singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez. The film details Selena's beginnings as a child performer up to her rise in stardom as a Latino and North American icon, ultimately culminating to her untimely and tragic death at the hands of her fanclub manager, Yolanda Saldivar. Jennifer Lopez
stars in the lead role, and Edward James Olmos
stars along side her as Selena's father, Abraham Quintanilla. This film is notable for providing a Star-Making Role
for Jennifer Lopez
This film provides examples of:
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: Selena's husband was Chris Perez- who had long hair, wore punk clothes, and played heavy metal before performing with her. Subverted when Chris turns out to be a Nice Guy.
- Character Title
- Dawson Casting: Lopez was 28 when the film was made, which was five years older than Selena was when she died.
- Downer Ending: When the Perez family and Chris are in the hospital and gets the news of Selena's death. They cry slow, painful tears
- In Real Life the Quintanilla family still tries to keep her name alive. Selena's father Abraham still manages her estate, image, and musical rights.
- Fake Nationality: The movie got into a little hot water when they cast Lopez to play Selena. Some people felt that they should honor Selena's Mexican heritage by hiring a Mexican actress, instead of Lopez, who's Puerto Rican.
- Non-Singing Voice: While Lopez can sing, the family felt it was important to have Selena's actual voice in the film, so Lopez lip-synched to Selena's songs.
- Star-Making Role: Before she was the diva J-Lo, she made her mark with this movie as Jennifer Lopez, talented actress.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Tomboy Selena who enjoyed playing outdoors, vs. girly girl Suzette who did not want to be a drummer because "girls don't play drums".