Lady Gaga wanted Marisa Tomei to play her in a biopic. What does Tomei think?

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Marisa Tomei channeled her inner bad boss in the new Amazon Prime movie "Upgraded," and said it didn't come naturally to her.

“It’s hard for me to do that. I’m like, ‘No one’s going to take me seriously,” she said during an appearance on TODAY with Hoda & Jenna.

Her character, Claire Dupont, is a high-flying dealer in the art world. When Ana (Camila Mendes) gets a job working for her department in the gallery, she thinks it's a dream come true. But the dream has a catch: Dealing with Claire and her assistants.

Maris Tomei (Amazon)
Maris Tomei (Amazon)

Speaking to backstage at 30 Rock, and wearing an all-red jumpsuit that Claire Dupont would certainly approve of, Tomei says she grew to "like" being able to "push the edge" of likability in her role.

"I thought I could probably push it even more. I told myself to keep going. Just let it — let it rip. Don't worry about being nice," she says, before adding that whatever Claire gave to her "didn't stick."

She thinks her character, like Mendes' Ana, is self-made, which explains that mysterious accent she has. "She is her own creation. She wants the atmosphere around her to crackle. So, we made up (the accent)," she said.

Tomei's character has drawn comparison to Miranda Priestley in "The Devil Wears Prada." Both are impeccably dressed titans who move in rarefied, wealthy art circles. Their chic coldness is admirable.

As for whether she thinks the two characters, in their fictional universes, have crossed paths?

"I don't think so. I think they're like cats, circling each other from far away, but not really get into it," Tomei says.

In short? Claire Dupont is a bad boss, but also a bad---. Coincidentally, that's the word Lady Gaga once used to describe the actor in 2011, also naming Tomei the person she'd most want to play her in a biopic. Both Tomei and Gaga were born and raised in New York.

“I would have Marisa Tomei play me. I am such a Marisa Tomei fan. All my friends call me Marisa when I get angry, because my New York accent just flies out of my body and I start smacking my gum,” Gaga, then 24, said on Sirius XM’s Morning Mashup.

12 years later, has any progress been made? "It was a compliment then and I'm complimented now," Tomei says, laughing. "I have to take her up on it, though. Gotta get cracking."

Leading lady is where she belongs. Tomei, over the course of her long and Oscar-winning career as an actor, has played a variety of roles, and told The Cut in 2018 that the "wing man" role has "a lot more interest, is funnier, has a lot more character."

She's since had a change of heart. "I have to take that back because they get paid less. So I've changed my mind on that situation," she says.

Tomei, on TODAY with Hoda & Jenna, reflected on how far she's come since her early roles, like on the sitcom "A Different World."

During her time on the show, she developed a close friendship with Lisa Bonet with the two of them even living together during filming. Bonet later made the Oscar winner the godmother of her three children.

"It feels like another planet," Tomei recalls. "It was a highlight, for sure."

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