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JLo on 25 years since 'Selena' release: ‘This movie means so much to me’

The iconic movie about the late Tejana singer Selena Quintanilla Perez became Jennifer Lopez's big breakout role when it was released on March 21, 1997.
Jennifer Lopez in "Selena."
Jennifer Lopez in "Selena."Warner Bros. / Courtesy Everett Collection

Jennifer Lopez is celebrating the 25th anniversary of “Selena” with a heartfelt post. The entertainer shared a slideshow filled with photos and videos of her time as Selena Quintanilla Perez.

Portraying the late Queen of Tejano music was Lopez’s breakout role and one that she says, “Means so much to me.” 

“What a very special day … we’re celebrating 25 years of SELENA! 🌹 Today we celebrate and honor Selena’s legacy and music,” Lopez, 52, wrote on her Instagram on Monday. “This movie means so much to me … Selena and her family mean so much to me, and I was so lucky to be chosen to play her.”

“Selena” was released March 21, 1997. Edward James Olmos, Constance Marie, Jon Seda and Jackie Guerra co-starred. The biographical drama told the tragic story of the Texan-born singer who was shot and killed by Yolanda Saldívar in 1995 at the age of 23.

“I’ll never forget this time in my life and it’s an honor as an artist to have been part of the magic that is this movie,” Lopez continued in her tribute.

Selena’s sister, Suzette Quintanilla, also reflected on the movie and its success. The former drummer wrote on her Instagram that she had “so many thoughts and feelings” about the film’s anniversary that she hopes to one day share with everyone.

“This post isn’t big enough to hold them all … I’ve heard throughout the years so many cool stories of what this movie represents to so many of y’all. Never gets old when I hear a mom or a dad tell me that their kids have watched it a 1000 times!” she wrote, thanking people for their love. She also shared that the film would be making its way back to theaters starting April 7.

In a follow-up post sharing the 25th anniversary trailer, Selena’s younger sister wrote in part, “Still wish she was here with us.”

In 2020, Netflix released the first part of “Selena: The Series,” with actor Christian Serratos as the iconic Mexican American singer. The second part was released in May 2021.

New Selena music is expected next month. The late singer’s father, Abraham Quintanilla, announced that a new album is in the works and will include 13 songs that are new arrangements by son A.B. Quintanilla.

“Selena has been gone 26 years now. ... What amazes me, and Suzette, my family, A.B., is 26 years later the public still remembers Selena. They haven’t let go of her. They’re waiting for a project like this to come out, and I know it will be well received by the public,” Quintanilla told Latin Groove News, adding that one song that will be released was recorded when Selena was 13 years old.

The song was digitally updated using the singer’s voice to sound as she did just before her death.

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