Selena Estate Legal Battle Continues

Quintanilla had previously fully commited to a reserve job of his possess, a collaboration with…

Quintanilla had previously fully commited to a reserve job of his possess, a collaboration with acclaimed Mexican-American storyteller Victor Villaseñor, greatest identified for his household epic, Rain of Gold. Villaseñor embedded with the Quintanillas, answering their phones, communing with prevail over enthusiasts and chronicling the public’s deep, even spiritual, bond with Selena. But when he shared an early draft — an account that portrayed Selena as a people saint with therapeutic powers — Quintanilla, a Jehovah’s Witness, erupted. “He mentioned, ‘We really don’t feel in saints or in angels or in miracles or any of that,’” Villaseñor tells Billboard. “Not only did he get upset with me, he introduced in his lawyer and mentioned if I produce a e-book on them, they’re going to sue me.”

For the subsequent 20 a long time, the manuscript sat on a shelf at Villaseñor’s ranch in Oceanside, Calif. — right up until he grew sick of staring at it and tossed it in the trash. “The father’s a really strong, spectacular person who requires to be in complete command,” grumbles Villaseñor.

The most definitive biography, Selena: Como la Flor, came from a Texas Month-to-month writer, Joe Nick Patoski, who had earlier interviewed Selena and to begin with secured Quintanilla’s cooperation. But once again, Quintanilla’s insistence on imposing floor guidelines led to a slipping out, and when the e book was released a 12 months immediately after her dying, Quintanilla publicly denounced it, even barging into a Corpus Christi radio studio wherever Patoski was being interviewed and, as Patoski remembers these days, grabbing the mic and calling him a “worm.”

“Keeping other individuals from telling their stories does not progress the legacy,” suggests Patoski, who has also published books about Willie Nelson and Stevie Ray Vaughan. “You want to elevate Selena’s star — why restrict it to only just one variation or just one viewpoint? Which is not management of a legacy it’s possessiveness.”


With his shoulder-length locks, hefty-metallic roots and occasional beer-soaked antics, Chris Perez in no way pretty resembled the sort of suitor Abraham Quintanilla regarded as deserving of his daughter’s affections. Selena might have been a vivacious, barrier-breaking performer in her spangled bustiers, inspiring a technology of young Latinas to embrace their roots whilst capturing for the stars, but she was however her father’s princess: healthful and trusting, with a scandal-free impression to sustain. Recognizing he would by no means approve, the youthful pair tiptoed about, sharing sly glances and furtive brushes. When Quintanilla at final caught on, he kicked Perez out of the band, contacting him a “cancer” on the family. And when Selena protested, as Perez has composed, her father fired again: “Of study course he enjoys you! You are stunning and you are abundant!”

Selena figured that the only way to win her father’s grudging approval was to marry. In 1992, two months just before her 20th birthday, she and Perez snuck off to the Nueces County courthouse — the very same location in which now the two guys in her daily life remain locked in dueling lawsuits — and tied the knot before a justice of the peace.

After Selena’s demise, Quintanilla asserted himself as the sole keeper of her flame. “Everybody copes with a tragedy like this in different strategies,” he informed the Related Push in 1995. “I get concerned with the business to consider my thoughts off it.” He filed trademark apps, licensed a Selena doll (clad in her signature bell-bottom jumpsuit) and executive-developed Selena, the 1997 biopic that cemented Jennifer Lopez’s star energy. Over the years, he would also sue (or threaten to sue) a prolonged list of alleged infringers — from the mortuary that dealt with Selena’s funeral to an air freshener enterprise to a skateboard designer to a slew of Etsy artisans — for unauthorized use of Selena’s title and picture.