Lady Gaga exorcises her demons in her nearly 14-minute-long clip for "Marry the Night," which premiered Thursday night. Depicting Gaga's journey from an early career trauma to her reinvention as a successful pop star, she intended for art to imitate life in the clip.
For those wondering what left Gaga so traumatized, she explained it all to E! News preceding the video's premiere. The video is a metaphor for how she felt when she was dropped from her first record label, Island Def Jam, before landing at her current home at Interscope.
"It was one of the worst days of my life and it happened quite quickly. But in my mind, when I think back on that period of my life, it all happened very slow," she explained.
"It is my personal way of seeing things. I am the artist of my own life. I choose to tell you what happened," she continued. "If you give up after something like that, you were never destined to be an entertainer."
In the video, after hearing from her ballet director that she should quit, she restructures her goal and plots her rise to pop stardom.
"In order to be great writing music or at fishing or at being a mechanic or designing buildings, you have to acknowledge what is wrong with your work, or what is dishonest about it," she said. "What have I not been really great at?"
Those obstacles, she says, are a big part of what makes her who she is now. "I love the obstacles," she said. "To marry your obstacles means I, the artist, wholeheartedly accept everything you throw at me. I am destined to struggle, I am destined to write music about the struggle and I accept it willingly."
There are several scenes where Gaga is naked and experiencing a mental breakdown in her apartment. "Well, I was naked in real life when it happened," she said, referring to the moment she found out she'd been dropped. "That's probably the most honest moment in that video of everything I've ever done. My directorial decision was for them to just f---ing roll the cameras, because I couldn't go in and out of the moment. I wonder if I will actually release that scene in its entirety — it's about 30 minutes long."
"It was intensely important to me that it was not too beautiful," she added. "It was an incredible experience. It was amazing. It was absolutely amazing."
This marks the first time that Gaga has directed a video all on her own. She recently split from her longtime creative director Laurieann Gibson, however, she clarified how the Haus works during the interview. "I have always been the creative director, and the Haus of Gaga has always been the creative force behind what we've done. There really aren't many tremendous changes.
"I know it's my directorial debut, but I've really created everything I've ever done in my career," she continued. "I really didn't do anything differently on this video that I didn't do on the 'Telephone' video or the 'Paparazzi' video or the 'Bad Romance' video. I hope my fans will take from this the progression that you have to trust yourself to make mistakes."
While the subject matter of the video is dark, there are also some tongue-in-cheek moments. "I always believe that you walk the line of humor if you're being so incredibly serious," she explained. "There's something quite comical about the opening of the video, even though it's quite sinister and dark," she said. "It's meant to be comical."
So, how would Gaga sum it all up? "In essence, it's insight into my entire creative process and the way that I view things," she said.