Mario Michael Lopez, Jr. ([ma'ɾio] /ˈmaɪkəl/ [lo'pes]; born October 10, 1973) is an American television host and actor who has appeared on several television series, in films, and on Broadway. He is best known for his portrayal of A.C. Slater on Saved By The Bell, who he also portrayed as a regular on Saved by the Bell: The College Years. He has appeared in numerous projects since, including the third season of Dancing with the Stars and as a celebrity guest host for the syndicated entertainment news magazine show Extra. He has also hosted America's Best Dance Crew for MTV, and as of 2012, he co-hosts the reality show of the U.S. version of the singing competition The X Factor, along with Khloe Kardashian.
Lopez's professional career began in 1984 when he appeared as younger brother Tomás in the short-lived ABC comedy series a.k.a. Pablo. That same year, he was cast as a drummer and dancer on Kids Incorporated. In March 1987, he was cast as a guest star on the popular sitcom The Golden Girls as a Cuban boy named Mario who faces deportation. In 1989, Lopez was cast as A.C. Slater in the popular television sitcom Saved by the Bell, a role which lasted five years. Lopez's character was a masculine, athletic student, helping to garner the actor a sizeable teenage-girl fan base. After Saved by the Bell ended in 1993, Lopez went on to reprise his role as A.C. Slater in the short-lived spin-off series Saved by the Bell: The College Years.
In 1997, Lopez starred as Olympic diver Greg Louganis in the television movie Breaking the Surface: The Greg Louganis Story. The following year, he was cast as Bobby Cruz in the USA Network series Pacific Blue. Lopez left the series after two seasons and went on to guest star on Resurrection Blvd., Eve, and The Bad Girl's Guide. In March 2006, Lopez joined the cast of the daytime soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful playing the role of Dr. Christian Ramirez. On July 18, 2006, he was released from his B&B contract. Later that year, he guest-starred as a plastic surgeon who drives Christian Troy to jealousy when he sees him naked in the shower in an episode of FX Network's Nip/Tuck during the show's fourth season, which began in Fall 2006. He also made an appearance on George Lopez as a police officer in late 2006. Lopez also guest-starred as a reporter for Extra Sesame Street in the Sesame Street episode "The Veggie Monster" in 2012.
Lopez and Courtney Mazza have a reality show on VH1 called Mario Lopez: Saved By the Baby which premiered on November 1, 2010.
Dancing with the Stars
In the fall of 2006, Lopez signed on as a contestant on the third season of Dancing with the Stars on ABC with professional partner and then-girlfriend Karina Smirnoff who was making her series debut. They finished in second place, losing to the team of Emmitt Smith and Cheryl Burke.
In 1992, he hosted his first series on NBC called Name Your Adventure.
He hosts the serial tabloid Extra, as well as the MTV reality shows America's Best Dance Crew and MTV's Top Pop Group. Lopez is both the host (with Carmen Palumbo) and co-executive producer of Sí TV's Dating Factory. In November 2012, he co-hosted the Fox singing competition The X Factor along with Khloe Kardashian.
Lopez has also guest co-hosted The Wendy Williams Show, and MC'ed the gala benefit for the 2010 Pageant of the Masters arts festival in Laguna Beach, California.
Lopez made his Broadway debut on April 15, 2008, in the revival of the musical A Chorus Line in the role of Zach.
Lopez has published three non-fiction books. The first, Mario Lopez Knockout Fitness, was published in 2008 and written together with Jeff O'Connell (who had previously written a fitness book with LL Cool J). A cookbook, Extra Lean, with various recipes followed in early 2010 and became a New York Times bestseller. A third book, Extra Lean Family, was published in May 2011. He released a children's book entitled Mario and Baby Gia by Celebra Children’s Books (a division of Penguin Books), on September 27, 2011. The book is about Lopez and his infant daughter Gia.
In 1993, Lopez was accused of date raping an 18-year-old woman. After six years of dating, Lopez married actress Ali Landry on April 24, 2004, in a Catholic ceremony at the Las Alamandas resort outside Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Two weeks later, their marriage was annulled. In a 2011 interview, Lopez admitted that the split occurred after Landry discovered Lopez had been unfaithful to her days before the wedding at his bachelor party. Lopez subsequently dated professional dancer Karina Smirnoff, his Dancing with the Stars partner, from 2006 to June 2008. Since the Fall of 2008, Lopez has been in a relationship with Broadway dancer Courtney Laine Mazza. In a 2009 interview, Lopez stated that he is Catholic and goes to church every week. In March 2010, it was announced that Lopez and Mazza were expecting a child. Their daughter, named Gia Francesca Lopez, was born on September 11, 2010, in Burbank, California. The couple became engaged over the 2011-2012 New Year's weekend. They married in Mexico on December 1, 2012.