Jennifer Lopez and Shakira announced that they will be honoring Kobe Bryant during their Super Bowl LIV halftime performance this Sunday night in Miami.
The announcement came during a press conference held earlier today. Lopez, 50, emotionally shared the moment she found out about Bryant’s tragic death – she was rehearsing for Sunday’s show when her fiancé, baseball star Alex Rodriguez, shared the news with tears in his eyes.
“He knew Kobe very well,” she told ET Canada. “They kind of came up together and entered sports at the same time, and he was just devastated.”
Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gigi were among nine passengers who all perished in a helicopter crash on January 26th. He leaves behind his wife, Vanessa, as well as three other daughters. Although Lopez only knew Kobe and Vanessa “in passing,” she said that the couple attended the last show of her Las Vegas residency on a date night.
“I think it’s affecting everyone so much, because it’s just reminding everyone how fragile life is and how we have to appreciate every single moment, and how we have to love people when they’re here and not wait…it can be taken away from us so easily.”
Shakira, 42, echoed the same sentiment.
“Life is so fragile,” she said. “We will all be remembering Kobe on Sunday and we will be celebrating life and celebrating diversity. I’m sure he will be very proud of the message we will be trying to convey on stage.”
The Hips Don’t Lie singer is the mother of two sons – Milan (7) and Sasha (5) – whom she shares with Spanish soccer player Gerard Piqué. Lopez is also the mother of two children, twins Maximilian David and Emme Maribel, who will turn 12 in late February. Their father is Lopez’ ex-husband, Latin singer Marc Anthony.
In relation to the Bryant tragedy, Lopez fought back tears on the subject of parenthood. “I [began to] think about Vanessa as a mom, and losing her best friend and partner, and losing her child…I think how awful [it] must be for her right now…I’m praying that God guides her through every moment because she has three more babies to to take care of.”
In addition to “spreading love and kindness,” Lopez says the goal of their performance is to “bring everyone together” – and although their halftime show is “packed,” Lopez says, it will not be without a “heartfelt” tribute to the late NBA legend. Her recent Instagram post thanked Bryant for his work ethic, inspiration, and heart.
Despite the overhanging cloud of loss, the two are still looking forward to Sunday night – Shakira says “it’s never-wracking but it’s also exhilarating.” She’s excited that it’s in Miami, and on her birthday!
A fun Twitter post from the press conference has J-Lo holding a bedazzled golden football with the date “02.02.2020” on it. Shakira captioned, “Loving @jlo’s purse with my birth date on it!!”
Catch Jennifer Lopez & Shakira take the stage during the Pepsi Super Bowl LIV Halftime Show on Sunday, February 2nd @ 6:30p on FOX.
— Shakira (@shakira) January 30, 2020