Cyndi Lauper may have been a pop superstar in the 1980s, but her popularity as a musical artist never seemed to translate into success on the silver screen. Her acting career seemed to stall after she starred opposite Jeff Goldblum in the unsuccessful 1988 comedy-adventure film Vibes, and since then, she has been seen in mostly minor roles. That’s a shame, because Lauper is one of the most charismatic and appealing performers in the business, and she deserves better.
Fortunately, it looks Lauper’s acting career is about to undergo something of a revival. The 57-year-old singer and activist has been cast in a new movie called The Last Beat. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the film is about an American rock star who travels to Paris in the early 1970s to find himself as a poet and writer. He ends up in a tortured love triangle, torn between his “California soulmate” girlfriend and the sultry French countess he meets in Paris. Details are sketchy at this point, but it’s a good bet that Lauper will play the countess.
If that scenario sounds oddly familiar, it’s because it parallels the sad trajectory of Jim Morrison, enigmatic lead singer for the seminal rock band The Doors. Morrison traveled to Paris in March 1971. His mysterious death in July of that year has been the object of speculation for decades. While the singer in The Last Beat is named “Jay Douglas,” it seems clear that writer/director Robert Saitzyk based the character in large part on Jim Morrison.
This is a really an interesting choice for Cyndi Lauper. With her distinctive voice, good looks, and famously unconventional fashion sense, Lauper might seem like a natural fit for comedic roles, yet The Last Beat will almost certainly be a serious film with dark undertones. How will the pop diva fare in this challenging role? Production starts this fall in Paris, so we’ll all have to wait to find out.