Jennifer Lopez & Leah Remini Recall Their First Meeting & Instant Bond

Jennifer Lopez has gone on the record in the past to say she believes everything happens at the right times and for the right reasons, like her partner Alex Rodriguez, or more recently, longtime BFF Leah Remini. In a new interview promoting their first film together, the romantic comedy Second Act, Lopez and Remini explained how they met, what they first thought of one another and how their friendship bloomed right away. Their comments, including Lopez’s, will make you believe there’s some truth to Lopez’s past comments about timing and these two were destined to be besties.

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“I was friends with Marc Anthony, and then he started dating Jennifer, and he was doing a film,” Remini told Entertainment Tonight in an interview published on Sunday. She continued, “I went to the premiere and he said, ‘You have to meet Jennifer!’ And he was telling Jennifer, ‘You have to meet Leah and Angelo [Pagan],’ my husband.”

Remini admitted jokingly that she hoped Lopez would “be ugly in real life,” having only seen her on-screen or in photos. “And then, when I was approaching her, I was like, ‘I hope it’s the lighting. Maybe she just looks good in here,’ and as I got closer I was like, ‘Oh damn, there’s a lot of light right here and she looks really pretty.”

Apparently, those were some of Remini’s first words to Lopez: “I even said that! I said, ‘Goddamnit, why the fuck why are you so fucking pretty?’ And she laughed,” Remini told ET.

“And we fell in love right there,” Lopez added, noting, “It was one of those instant chemistry things, where you just feel like, ‘I love this person. I love being around this person. This person makes me laugh.’ She’s cool and we also have very similar upbringings. That’s why we work well together.”

Remini added, “Her sense of humor, the fact that I could bust her balls and she wasn’t caught up on herself, said something to me.”

In the course of their 14-year friendship, Lopez and Remini hadn’t ever worked together on the same film until Second Act. In the romantic comedy, they play on-screen best friends Maya (Lopez) and Joan (Remini). When Lopez developed the script with her producing partners and screenwriters, Justin Zackham and Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas, she said the similarities between her friendship with Remini and Maya’s friendship with Joan made Remini the perfect choice for the part.

“So we begged her to do it,” Lopez said. “We were like, ‘If she does it, I know that it would be something special.’ Because the relationship that Maya and Joan have is very special, and the relationship that we have is very special. I knew that if we could capture our real honesty, our real love, our real humor, then that would be something really entertaining and fun for everybody to see.”

More: Jada Pinkett Smith & Leah Remini Hash Out Their Feud on Red Table Talk

Second Act, which also stars Milo Ventimiglia and Vanessa Hudgens, hits theaters on Dec. 21.

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