Full Name: Selena Marie Gomez
Nickname (s): Sel, Selly
Height: 5′5 (165.1 cm)
Birth Date: July 22nd, 1992
Birth Place: Grand Prairie, Texas
Birth Parents: Ricardo Gomez & Mandy Teefy
Nationality: Mexican & Italian
Occupation (s): Actress, Singer
Gomez, an only child, was born in Grand Prairie, Texas to Ricardo Gomez and Mandy Teefy (née Cornett), a former stage actress who was 16 when Selena was born. Her birth parents split when she was five years old, and her mother remarried in 2006 to Brian Teefy. Gomez was named after singer Selena. Her father is from Mexico, and she has Italian ancestry on her mother’s side.
Gomez began her acting career at the age of seven, playing Gianna, a recurring role in Barney & Friends. She said of working on the show, “I was very shy when I was little. I didn’t know what ‘camera right’ was. I didn’t know what blocking was. I learned everything from Barney.” She later had minor roles in Spy Kids 3D and Walker, Texas Ranger: Trial By Fire.
In 2004, Gomez was discovered by the Disney Channel in a nation wide scouting. She appeared as minor characters in The Suite Life of Zack & Cody and Hannah Montana, before being cast in Wizards of Waverly Place as one of the main characters, Alex Russo. She also appears in the 2009 Disney Channel movie based on the show.
In 2008, Gomez appeared in Another Cinderella Story, the direct-to-DVD sequel to the 2004 Hilary Duff film, opposite Drew Seeley. In its January 2009 television debut on ABC Family, it drew 5.3 million viewers and was ranked as the month’s number one cable movie across all key demographics. She also had a minor voiceover role as one the Mayor’s ninety-six daughters in Horton Hears a Who!. In April 2008, Forbes listed Gomez as one of its “Eight Hot Kid Stars To Watch”. In October, Gomez launched a production company, July Moon Productions, and teamed with XYZ films to create star vehicles for her.
In 2009, she appeared in the Disney Channel movie, Princess Protection Program with Demi Lovato. The film drew 8.5 million viewers on its premiere night, the third-highest premiere for a Disney Channel Original Movie.
Gomez recorded the theme song, “Everything Is Not What It Seems” for Wizards of Waverly Place. She recorded a cover of “Cruella de Vil” for Disney. In 2008, she recorded three songs for the soundtrack to Another Cinderella Story. She also recorded “Fly to Your Heart” for Disney’s animated film Tinker Bell. In July 2008, Gomez signed a record deal with Hollywood Records. During an interview with MTV in August 2008, Gomez said: “I’m going to be in a band — no Selena Gomez stuff. I’m not going to be a solo artist. I think that I don’t want my name attached to it. I will be singing, and I’m learning drums and playing electric guitar.” In 2009, Gomez recorded “One and the Same”, a duet with Demi Lovato, 4 songs for the Wizards of Waverly Place Soundtrack and “Whoa Oh!” with Forever the Sickest Kids.
Gomez is best friends with fellow Disney Channel actress Demi Lovato, whom she has known since they met at a Barney & Friends audition. After Gomez and Lovato posted a video on YouTube in March 2008, Miley Cyrus uploaded a parody of that video, which caught the interest of entertainment media. Reports included the theory that Gomez and Cyrus were arguing over Nick Jonas, or that Gomez and Lovato might replace Cyrus. On replacing Cyrus, Gomez clarified, “I’m not interested in being anybody but myself, and I’m not here to replace anyone. I think that she’s a wonderful performer, and of course it’s a compliment. But I would like to take a different route.” Gomez is a Christian and began wearing a purity ring with “true love waits” engraved when she was 12 years old. She has four dogs.
Charities and Ad Campaigns
Gomez was involved in the UR Votes Count campaign which helped encourage teenagers learn more about their Presidential Candidates (Barack Obama and John McCain). In October 2008, Gomez was named a spokesperson for the 2008 Trick-or-Treat UNICEF campaign, which encouraged children to make Halloween count by helping other children around the world. Gomez said of being a spokesperson, “I am extremely excited to be this year’s Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF spokesperson. I want to help encourage other kids to make a difference in the world and show them that Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF is such a great, fun way to get involved,” the campaign president described Gomez as being a “great role model”. In October 2008, Gomez participated in St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital “Runway For Life” benefit.
Gomez is a spokesperson for Borden Milk, she is featured in the campaign’s print and commercial ads. Gomez is the ambassador of DoSomething.org after being involved with the charity Island Dog, which help dogs in Puerto Rico. She was featured in State Farm Insurance’s TV commercials. Gomez is also involved with the charity RAISE Hope For Congo. Gomez is involved in Disney’s Friends for Change. She was featured in a commercial on the Disney Channel. She recorded “Send it On” with several other Disney musicians for the charity.