After Joker director Todd Phillips confirmed that a sequel to the 2019 film is underway earlier this month, it’s been revealed that Lady Gaga is in talks to star opposite Joaquin Phoenix in the role of Harley Quinn.
Last week, Phillips announced Joker: Folie à Deux by sharing the cover of its script, written by him and his Joker co-writer Scott Silver. He also included a photo of Phoenix reading the script, suggesting the actor’s return to the titular role after delivering an Oscar-winning performance in the original.
Now, The Hollywood Reporter has revealed that, according to sources, the upcoming sequel is a musical. The involvement of Phoenix is also reportedly not a done deal just yet, with the actor and Warner presently in negotiations.
Gaga – real name Stefani Germanotta – is in early discussions about playing Quinn, the Joker’s psychiatrist at Arkham Asylum who falls in love with him, helps him escape and eventually becomes his sidekick and romantic partner.
Their relationship has been portrayed onscreen before – with Margot Robbie playing Quinn in 2016’s Suicide Squad, 2020’s Birds of Prey and 2021’s The Suicide Squad – but Folie à Deux would mark the first time the character appears in Phillips’ Joker universe.
Gaga has had multiple starring roles in recent years, such as 2018’s A Star Is Born – which Phillips produced – and last year’s House of Gucci.
NME declared the original Joker an “instant classic” in a five-star review upon its release in 2019, in particular praising Phoenix’s performance as Arthur Fleck. “The appearance is one thing, but the all-round delivery is a tour-de-force,” wrote Greg Wetherall.
“He pulls off the difficult trick of delivering an anti-hero whom connects with the viewer even though they may deplore his decisions and abhor his actions. Phoenix translates this discombobulating sensation out of the screen and into your senses.”