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Lady Gaga Makes Big Screen Debut as Ruthless Assassin in "Machete Kills"

Image courtesy of Open Road Films (via ABC News Radio)
Image courtesy of Open Road Films (via ABC News Radio)

Before she became a global superstar, Lady Gaga had a few minor TV roles, but since she became famous, she hasn't really acted, unless you want to count playing herself on The Simpsons .  But on Friday, all that changes, as she blasts onto movie screens in director Roberto Rodriguez' violent, bloody action movie Machete Kills.

The movie, which stars Mel Gibson , Charlie Sheen , Sofia Vergara , Michelle Rodriguez , Amber Heard and dozens more stars, is a sequel to the 2010 film Machete , and follows the continuing exploits of the title character, a former member of the Mexican Federal Police force, played by Danny Trejo .   Gaga got involved because she enjoyed the original movie. 

"I was a fan of Machete when it came out. It was the first time in a while that I had gone to the movie theater,” she says. "I went out, and I bought some tequila, and put on my leather jacket, and I watched the film, and I laughed the whole time. I am a really big fan, and all of the stars aligned and I’m really happy to be [in this one].”

Comparing acting in the movie to singing for fans onstage, Gaga explains, "In a way, the preparation was exactly the same as what I do for my stage shows, except I have lines, and there’s a character that’s a little bit different from myself. But I applied what I do in my own work to my work with Robert.”

Gaga's character is La Camaleon -- "The Chameleon" -- a ruthless assassin who's a master of disguise, and who is actually played by four different actors: Gaga, Antonio Banderas , Cuba Gooding Jr. and Walt Goggins .  To create her own unique version of the character, Gaga says, she "had some very specific ideas about her outfit."  She told Rodriguez that she felt La Camaleon should have a coat made out of a wolf skin, as well as "a machete tattoo, and tangerine hair."  She adds, "He really liked my ideas, and I love his ideas, so together we created this little moment in the film, and it’s very nice."

Cuba Gooding Jr., one of the other actors who plays The Chameleon, tells ABC News Radio that Gaga's performance reminded him of the kind of performance you might see from, say, a rapper-turned-actor.

"There was a time period where they only wanted to cast rappers for street kids because they were authentic, but there was something to be said about a guy who was on stage every night all year, performing for an audience, even though he had never acted in a film," explains Gooding. "He still knew how to get lost in his world, and that was Lady Gaga. You would've thought she had been doing this her whole life.  She's wonderful in the movie."  

By the way, make sure to stick around for the very end of Machete Kills for a hint about Gaga's future movie plans.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio