With Netflix's Lucifer currently in production on Tom Ellis' final run as the devilish lead, fans are getting yet another update on the upcoming season – and this one's beautiful music to our ears.
Earlier this week, fans were whistling – or possibly singing – a happy tune with news that the series was going the "musical episode" route with "Bloody Celestial Karaoke Jam", featuring multiple musical numbers (and not to be confused with the season's 1940's-set episode).
Now we've learned that that singer and 80's icon Debbie Gibson ("Electric Youth", "Shake Your Love") will appear (and sing) in the episode. Gibson portrays Shelly Bitner, a controlling helicopter mother who won't let her teenage son JJ have any say in his own future – though beyond that, storyline details are being kept under wraps.
Series showrunners Ildy Modrovich and Joe Henderson have always had a musical episode in mind for Lucifer, and feel that they've found the right time to pull it off (though no further details on the episode were made available):
"We wanted to have a real grounded story reason why they're signing and dancing, and not just, 'Oh, this is going to be the one where everybody sings and dance'. It's been a little game of Tetris [planning the episode] but it's super fun. It's going to be amazing. It's going to be just such a bucket list thing for me."
– Ildy Modrovich
Previously, fans received some pretty big news on who they can expect this season – and this was a pretty big one.
How big? God.
That right, EW revealed that 24 veteran Dennis Haysbert set to take on the role of The Almighty: big poppa to Lucifer (Ellis) and his angelic brother Amenadiel (D.B. Woodside). The bros will have some quality time to spend with Dad: Haysbert will appear throughout the season. Interesting note: Haysbert and Woodside played brothers (and presidents) David and Wayne Palmer, respectively, on FOX's 24.
"Every time I see D.B., there's always this fondness and this connection…We worked on a show that was arguably one of the best shows ever produced in television, so you're going to have a kind of camaraderie. [laughing] I don't know how I went from brothers to father. We're celestial. We can do that."
– Dennis Haysbert
So remember back in October when Lucifer star Tom Ellis "clarified" to ET's Katie Krause that he was in Vancouver "to visit my friend for his birthday" and that he would not be appearing in The CW's Arrowverse mega-crossover event "Crisis on Infinite Earths" – contrary to social media rumors?
Then "Crisis on Infinite Earths: Part Three" happened – and we found Ellis' Lucifer being annoyed with Matt Ryan's John Constantine – and flirty with David Ramsey's Diggle and Katherine McNamara's Mia – as they try to get Oliver (Stephen Amell) his soul back:
So a week after Ellis confessed to and offered details on the "conspiracy" that kept the cameo a secret, we're learning a little more about how it all went down – and a huge, lingering question mark that remains.
In an interview with EW, Lucifer showrunners Joe Henderson and Ildy Modrovich revealed that as excited as they are over the appearance they're just as much in the dark about the referenced Lucifer-Constantine-Maze (Lesley-Ann Brandt) connection as fans are.
While they did consult on the scene, The Flash episode's co-writer (and Lucifer fan) Lauren Certo was the one who put the trio's backstory into motion:
"I have thoughts. By the way, credit where credit is due: That scene, we only added two things to it. One, I pitched the flirt joke, which Tom surprised the actor who plays Diggle with. I wish we'd been covering his side because you got a great reaction from him. And then the Constantine, Constantyne [bit], that was Tom having heard about the debate from one of our writers. Other than that, that was all them [on The Flash]. And I thought they did such a wonderful job of capturing the voice, knowing how to write Lucifer, because Lauren Certo, [who] watches the show [and] is a fan of it, wrote our Lucifer, which was lovely.
I have theories [about Lucifer and Constantine's past relationship] and we should explore it in the spin-off."
– Joe Henderson
(That's a joke!!!! They both even laughed immediately after the words left his mouth.)
Surprisingly, the thought of having Ellis roll up into the Arrowverse isn't a new one – with Henderson revealing that it first started taking shape after last year's "Elseworlds" crossover event:
"A year ago when they announced 'Crisis on Infinite Earths,' I called the executive of DC and I'm like, 'If there are infinite earths, that means Lucifer's on one of them. And I don't know if they'd already thought of it. I still haven't actually asked Marc Guggenheim. I've been meaning to. I don't know what was the chicken and the egg, but all I know is like that has been something that I've been wanting to do ever since I heard it happened and I can't believe we actually did it. It's the coolest thing."
Singer-The Voice judge/coach-talk show host-Lucifer superfan Kelly Clarkson kept her promise by visiting the set (with her mother and sister) and offering fans a look at how their Ellis-led tour went.
But with Clarkson wasn't going to leave the set without a little bit of news for viewers to chew on – and in this case, the news came from a great source: Ellis himself. With the final season upped to 16 episodes, Ellis revealed how Netflix intends to run the season – and if you're a fan of AMC's The Walking Dead, you're pretty familiar with how this works:
"Season 5 of Lucifer is going to be split into two halves. Netflix are gonna drop eight episodes and then there's gonna be a little break, and then they're gonna drop another eight episodes."
In case you hadn't heard, the final season is going to include a turn to the "noir" for one episode this season – this one, with a little musical style.
Filmed in black-and-white and set in an alternate 1940's where our favorites will be playing different versions of the characters we're used to, Ellis' Lucifer Morningstar and Lesley-Ann Brandt's Mazikeen aka Maze will be teaming up for a duet – as you can see for yourselves in the following ET-exclusive image:
Since we don't want to spoil the great work ET did for this behind the scenes look, we'll highlight two quotes that caught our eye:
"The lovely thing about this episode is you see a lot of our regular characters in a different light. The thing about Lucifer is that he's timeless, so he's been coming back to Earth all this time. There's an element to Lucifer where he seems to be from the Oscar Wilde period. And to see the other characters fall back into that style is quite interesting."
– Tom Ellis
"The storyline is really the genesis of the Maze that fans have come to know and love, but we track it back to its origin point and how the relationship between Maze and Lucifer was really forged and why she would help, you know?"
– Lesley-Ann Brandt
If that's not enough, let Ellis offer you a little "soft shoe" tease of just how special the episode's going to be:
TVLine reported Battlestar Galactica star Tricia Helfer is returning to the role of "Mama Diablo" – marking her return to the character since her last appearance at the end of the third season. To go along with their reporting, the site also released an exclusive image of Helfer – who looks like she stepped off the set of Pleasantville:
Here's a look back at the shooting script info on the season opener, sporting the curious-sounding title "Really Sad Devil Guy" – written by executive producer Jason Ning (The Expanse) and directed by Eagle Egilsson (Gotham). Following the opener, viewers can look forward to "Lucifer! Lucifer! Lucifer!", "¡Diablo!", "It Never Ends Well for the Chicken", "Detective Amenadiel", "BluBallz", "Our Mojo", "Spoiler Alert", "Redacted", "Bloody Celestial Karaoke Jam", and "Resting Devil Face"(so much to unpack in those titles).