It was only recently that Lopez stepped into her current role, but she’s been making a difference at Lifetime for some time. Lopez was a powerful force behind the launches of “Cocaine Godmother,“ “Faith Under Fire: The Antoinette Tuff Story,” “Flint” and “I Am Elizabeth Smart,” all successes for the network. Her involvement has also been a huge reason why Lifetime’s Broad Focus initiative continues to flourish. The initiative aims to ensure women are hired to write, produce and direct content for the network in greater numbers than any other network or studio in the industry. “I feel more and more the sisterhood of women in this business,” Lopez says. “We can no longer compete against each other, but instead stand together to life each other up.”
What are your thoughts on the industry’s current response to the MeToo movement, and its treatment of men who have been accused of sexual harassing and/or assaulting women and men? Are there other steps you feel should be taken?
I think the steps are appropriate, but as with anything, change is difficult. It’s always hard to look at ourselves in the mirror and be honest. Why have we allowed it to go on this long? What did I do by turning my head and passively look the other way or thinking that this is what it just is. We all carry responsibility and now must hold ourselves accountable. We must accept that men we know behaved badly and suffer consequences, and we must not make excuses for them or for ourselves. We must continue to support those who have had the courage to speak out and change our own behavior.
What’s a recent example of a step forward for women in the media industry?
I feel more and more the sisterhood of women in this business. We can no longer compete against each other, but instead stand together to lift each other up.
Who is an inspirational woman you admire, and why?
I’m inspired by women who act out for the benefit of others and who don’t expect a spotlight shown on them. Courage is often witnessed by few but felt by many.
What’s been the most dramatic change in your sector of the business today vs. three years ago?
The most dramatic change in my sector of the business is the number of outlets there are in the business. It’s upped the stakes and forced us to ask ourselves what we are as an entertainment company and who is our audience we serve.