The singer and actress shared a behind-the-scenes featurette on her YouTube channel Thursday, in which she trains with a pole choreographer for months before nailing her moves on the set of the film.
In the clip, which starts four months before production on the movie and ends with her big debut on set, she shared that this training may be the most difficult thing she’s ever done for a film. “I’ve gotten cuts and bruises and stuff from movies, but I’ve never been bruised like this for anything I’ve ever done,” she said.
“It’s rough on your body,” Lopez explained. “It’s real acrobatics, but I’m just trying to learn the mechanics right now because strippers have lots of time to practice, they’re there every night, they learn little by little, but we have to do a crash course.”
And although she looks like a pro, she said the goal is not for her to look like she’s a part of famed performance troupe Cirque du Soleil. “I’m just trying to look convincing [as if] I’ve been stripping for a while, I’m comfortable on this pole, and I’m also comfortable with my game, because my character really has the hustle down,” she explained.
In the film, Lopez plays veteran Manhattan strip club dancer Ramona, who takes a mother desperate to make ends meet (played by Constance Wu) under her wing. Cardi B, Lizzo, Trace Lysette, Lili Reinhart, and Julia Stiles also star in the film.
Hustlers hits theaters Sept. 13.