Jennifer Lopez says hiring a Latin artist to play her boyfriend on “Marry Me” is a top priority.
The singer, who plays fictional pop superstar Kat Valdez in the film, said no to some of music’s biggest artists when casting Bastian, a role that ultimately went to Maluma.
“So many names have come out. All the great musicians you can think of right now,” the “On the Floor” singer told Apple Music’s Zane Lowe. “But not a single Latin name came up. And I was like, ‘You know what? that’s just in Spanish, and let’s talk Spanish in the movie.'”
She continued, “When we were talking about this part, a lot of different names came up. We need someone who’s a musician, a superstar, super swag, who can play their character. And all the nuances that he could be adorable.”
Although the part called “the perfect, good guy,” Lopez said there was a caveat: The person also had to be “the guy you don’t want to marry, and who could that be?”
Maluma was eventually hired to play Bastian, Kat’s boyfriend who cheats on her on the day they are supposed to get married.
Lopez added of Maluma, “The two songs he wrote specifically for the movie, not as a Maluma song, but as a Bastian song, were so impressive to me. Because it showed me that he really understood the character.”
“Marry Me,” also starring Owen Wilson, Sarah Silverman and “Game of Thrones” star John Bradley, hits theaters February 11.