They may be separated but Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony are united in business -- and apparently against the press.
The pair, along with choreographer Jamie King, are producing a Latin America talent-search show for Univision called "Q'Viva! The Chosen," which premieres Jan. 28, and were the bait used to lure sleep-deprived reporters to a 7:30 a.m. Univision-sponsored breakfast Saturday on the next-to-the-last day of the Television Critics Association's winter meetings.
It's a day whose activities -- mostly press conferences and grab-a-star interviews -- are scheduled to run till 10 p.m. So maybe the critics were a little cranky.
But when Univision, whose spokeswoman later cited "technical difficulties," ran down the clock to the point where reporters only got to ask a few questions of Anthony and J. Lo (and this only after shouting down a Univision host who was trying to ask all the questions herself -- things got ugly.
"This is a tough crowd," remarked Anthony at one point. "It's too early for this."
Reduced to analyzing the pair's attitudes and body language (yep, this is why I got into newspapers), here's what we saw:
-- They were seated side by side, Lopez in a blue leather dress with artistic cut-outs in the shape of flowers. Or possibly snowflakes. Maybe not what most people breakfast in, but she looked like a star. (He was wearing jeans, strategically torn at the knees. No, not in the shape of flowers. Or, I'm pretty sure, snowflakes.)
-- Her legs were crossed away from him, but the upper part of her body leaned in his direction, and her left hand rested on the armrest of her chair on his side and occasionally touched his arm. I think. (Seated less than 10 feet away, I might've been too dazzled by their presence to be sure. Also, I was typing.)
-- At one point, he leaned over and (gasp) fingered one of the four pieces of bling she was wearing on that hand, as if he didn't recognize the ring on her pinky finger. Maybe a present from the new boyfriend? Or maybe Lopez just has so much bling that not even Anthony can be expected to keep track of it? Honestly, I haven't a clue.
In one of the few questions from the cheap seats that actually made its way through, they were asked what it was like working together and whether they'd continue with a Season 2 if the show were successful.
"It will be successful. We will have Season 2," replied Lopez, neatly sidestepping the first question. At the very end of the very brief press conference, which was interrupted by performances by two dance groups King later refused to identify because it would be a show spoiler, Lopez did add, as she left the stage, "It was the same as any time we work together. We have a great time working together."
So how much are they working together?
A Univision spokeswoman said "Q'Viva" will show them in action together -- not judging, but producing, according to Anthony. She also said they'd spent three days together this week, working on narrowing the field of contestants.