Selena Gomez, star of the hit Disney series Wizards of Waverly Place, sat down with Latina contributor Jayson Rodriguez to discuss her life as a teen celebrity, including the perks and the pitfalls that come with it. The 16-year-old has a surprisingly mature understanding of her unique position. "I always wanted this to be my life," Selena says, "but I don't want it to live my life for me." She also address her feud with fellow teen queen Miley Cyrus, her relationship with Nick Jonas, and her proud Latin roots:
ON LOOKING UP TO BRITNEY SPEARS: "In a way, Britney can be someone to look up to. She was constantly being looked at and picked on, and it’s starting to happen to me. At the moment, I don’t have anything good they can pick on me with, but they’ll find something. Maybe I can be as strong."
ON BEING PROUD OF HER LATIN ROOTS: "I didn’t even realize what a big deal it was to be Latin at first. But then one day being with my dad, it hit me: it’s pretty neat to be Mexican. And there aren’t enough Latinas in Hollywood—or there are, but they don’t get the recognition. So to be able to come out here and use that, it’s really a powerful thing."
ON BEING A PEREZ HILTON FAVORITE: "I felt like it was a school yearbook and I made most popular,” she says of her first mention on Hilton’s blog. “I’ve never met him, but he’s been very nice to me. That’s a good thing, ’cause not everybody is so nice."
ON HER FEUD WITH MILEY CYRUS: "I think Miley can agree with me. There are so many more things going on that are so much more important to us in our lives than wasting time on that stuff."
ON HER RELATIONSHIP WITH NICK JONAS: "He’s a wonderful guy, and anybody would be extremely lucky to be dating him."
To read the full story, be sure to pick up Latina, on newsstands March 17.
Watch Selena on the set of her Latina cover shoot. Video below.