Music Video of the Day: I’m Glad by Jennifer Lopez (2002, dir by David LaChapelle)


Believe it or not, this is the video that got Jennifer Lopez sued.

That’s right.  Paramount Pictures actually sued Jennifer Lopez and Sony Music over a claim of copyright infringement, saying that they had no right to make a video that was clearly a recreation of the 1980s dance film, Flashdance.  Lopez countered that Flashdance is one of her favorite movies and that the video was meant to be a loving homage.  Personally, I think the video plays more like a satire but regardless, Lopez’s affection for the source material does shine through.

Here’s the thing, though.  Paramount might have had a point about the copyright infringement thing.  But this video introduced a whole new generation of people (like me) to their film.  Would I have ever watched Flashdance if not for this video?  Well, probably.  I have a weakness for 80s dance movies.  But what about people who aren’t attracted to flashy 1983 films like a moth to an open flame?  This video is probably the best advertisement for Flashdance that’s ever been made.

While it’s easy to dismiss Paramount’s lawsuit as a miscalculation, the lawsuit filed by Maureen Marder was  a far more tragic story.  Marder was the dancer whose life story inspired Flashdance.  Marder was paid a flat fee of $2,300 for her story.  Flashdance went on to make 150 million at the U.S. box office.  Basically, a lot of people got rich off of Flashdance but the dancer who inspired the film did not.  Nor did Marder see any money from the subsequent Broadway musical or Lopez’s music video.  Marder, whose career was ended by a spinal injury, sued Lopez for copyright infringement in 2003.  Three years later, Marder’s suit was dismissed.

Anyway, despite all of the legal drama. I like this video.  I like that Lopez dances as if her life depended upon it and I like that she’s unashamedly and unabashedly sexy in the video.  Famously, Lopez was intimately involved in the editing of this video and refused to allow any type of retouching to be done to her famously curvy figure.  This video features her at her most confident and determined, showing off the drive that made her a star.  Say what you will about Jennifer Lopez as an actress, she can dance.

Hopefully, someday, someone will do a music video based on the finale of Dance or Die.  Now, that would be something to see!  Until then, I’m Glad is the perfect 80s homage/satire.

Enjoy!