Billy Joel
Debby Wong /

In a surprising cameo, Billy Joel is set to appear in the upcoming Thanksgiving episode of ‘Arrow‘ which will be debuting this week! Well, maybe not Joel directly but footage from one of his previous concerts will be making an appearance as if the singer himself was in Star City. Michael Emerson’s Cayden James wants to ruin Turkey Day for residents and decide that blowing up a concert venue is the way to go. Executive producer Marc Guggenheim has been a fan of Joel since childhood and was able to make what he wrote into the script as a filler into a reality.

According to Guggenheim:

“For the Thanksgiving episode of Arrow, we wanted Cayden James to threaten a major event at Star City. A variety of ideas were discussed, but when we settled on a rock concert, I knew it had to be Billy Joel.”

While it wasn’t initially set to be Joel and he was just used as a name in the script to be replaced by what would likely have been a fictional band, he ended up contacting Joel and seeing if they could actually obtain permission to use both concert footage and an actual song in the episode:

“Having grown up on Long Island — where, as it happens, this episode’s concert footage was taken from — I’ve been a fan of Billy and his music since I was 7 years old. He’s always been an inspiration to me, personally and artistically. I told him as much when I wrote to him to ask for his permission to use his concert footage in our episode and when he agreed, it was one of the happiest days of my career. I chose ‘No Man’s Land’ for the episode because I wanted to use an album track and I’ve always liked how that particular song sounds live.”

Not only was Guggenheim able to find a way to have one of his favorite singers “appear” on the show but he was able to do put him in a potentially life-threatening situation without ever actually appearing on set. Well, as far as we know. It is always possible that Joel showed up briefly to film a bit of a surprise cameo as well but at this time it just sounds as if previously shot footage was used and we won’t see any interaction between our heroes and Joel.

Are you excited to see a fun real-world connection appearing in ‘Arrow’ or when cameos are made like this does it take you out of the moment? Is there another artist you feel would have been more fitting for the series? Share your thoughts below!

Source: Entertainment Weekly