Girls and gays, Lady Gaga is no longer ours. After writing what will probably be an Oscar-nominated song for Top Gun: Maverick (with the requisite pro-military music video), she officially announced today that she will be starring alongside Joaquin Phoenix in the sequel to Joker. She belongs to the boys now.
Gaga made the announcement on Twitter, sharing a video that appears to show her and Phoenix in silhouette, dancing to Irving Berlin’s “Cheek to Cheek.” Little monsters will know immediately that Gaga famously covered the song on her first album with Tony Bennett, also called Cheek to Cheek.
Buzz surrounding the Joker sequel has been building since June, when writer-director Todd Phillips shared the cherry-red cover of the screenplay. The full title is Joker: Folie à Deux, which is an obnoxious way of saying “this time there’s two nutjobs.” According to an earlier report, Gaga will be playing Harley Quinn opposite Phoenix’s clown prince of crime.
As if things couldn’t be worse, Joker: Folie à Deux is reportedly a musical. While I love the idea of Gaga doing another musical after A Star Is Born, let’s not forget who else we’re working with here. Phillips is the genius behind The Hangover and War Dogs, movies that don’t really evoke the joie de vivre of the classic musicals he’s suggesting with the Berlin song choice. But maybe that’s what’s so sick and twisted about it.
If you would like to complain about Gaga taking a stroll down Alpha Male Lane, please address your letters to Bradley Cooper. I cannot confirm that he is behind this, but he is best friends with Phillips. He even got an Oscar nomination for producing Joker, and I would guess that he is the one who brought up Gaga’s name when discussing which actress would best bring the energy of a standup comic-turned-mass murderer while also drawing in audience members beyond the first film’s core demographic of male incels.
Meanwhile, I will sit here patiently, waiting for Gaga to come back to us one day. Hopefully this is a brief detour, one that doesn’t involve something like a nü metal album or appearing on any podcasts that are actually just YouTube videos.