Madonna news - Dec. 2002

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13 December - DADay director stands up for Madonna's song
Die Another Day score composer David Arnold didn't like Madonna's Bond theme at all calling it 'tune-free' but the movie's director Lee Tamahori has a different opinion.
Lee told Undercover News that David is entitled to his opinion but the song is there for a purpose and that purpose is to bring a younger audience to James Bond. "Well there has been a huge tradition as everybody knows" Lee said. "There is no secret that for 40 years the Bond movies have always employed 'The Ballad'. The Shirley Bassey template that was set in Goldfinger set the tone forever. Then somewhere in the 80s they started experimenting with Duran Duran and so and so. It seemed to me as a fan of the genre when I was watching it, it always seemed to me to be a little behind the 8 ball. By the time it came out it was like "oh wasn't that last years ...." So anyway, it was flavour of the month all through the 80s. I have always like the ballad but when it came to the 20th movie, 40th anniversary we wanted to move beyond the ballad. It was a conscious decision to do so."
He is well aware of the love / hate relationship people are having with Madonna's Die Another Day. "People love this song, people hate this song" he says. "Bond traditionalists don't seem to like Madonna coming in with her electronic, techno, dance , track. However, there is a huge audience out there, a much younger audience who don't care about Shirley Bassey and all the great themes".
So what does Lee think of it? "My own personal view is, while it is a very odd choice, when she was doing the soundtrack I went to her and said "what have you got for us" and she gave us this track and said "I think this will be great". I thought like all of us that this is a bit odd but it may work very well" he says.
He also says what Madonna originally offered is not want ended up on the soundtrack. "She did some major modifications to it and what there is is what there is" he says. "It is very technical and it has what I call seemingly dropouts in it which are a big worry to me as a film maker. The track seems to stop and not keep going for the images. We massaged that. I'm very happy with it. It has grown on me. I will be the first to admit I was not that fond of it when I first heard it. I have grown to like it a lot more".
Despite the creative differences between the director and the composer over the Madonna song Lee stands by composer David Arnold's decision. "I know David who is the composer likes to have the entire frame-work set up for these movies. It is a very personal view of he is very entitled to it and I know he was very unhappy with it from the start. But remember this, even though David has been involved in three of the other movies he does not always embrace the soundtrack into the theme. He usually finds a theme that carries through the other movies including this one (as he has done) and he doesn't always haul the soundtrack or the track that covers the credit sequence into it. This argument will go on forever. It is a moot point. It is there now and that's it".
Die Another Day is the 20th James Bond movie. As a footnote, there will be a 21st and it will star Pierce Brosnan. Brosnan told Undercover News he was originally signed to do three Bond movies with an option for a forth. 'Die Another Day' used up the option. "They have asked me to make another one and I have said yes" he said. The next Bond movie will be released in 2004. (source: Undercover)
~ Notice that Madonna originally offered another song. This could be the rumoured "Can't You See My Mind?". Let's hope this will see the light of day on the new album.

12 December - Jeweller speaks about the Ritchie's wedding rings
Jeweller Stephen Webster speaks to Hello! magazine (17 December 2002 issue) about his jewellery, and how his work rose to fame when he created the rings for Madonna and Guy's wedding. In 2000 he got a call from Madonna's record company, Maverick, asking if he could make a ring for her future husband Guy Ritchie - a platinum band studded with six diamonds. 'It was one of the great things that changed my career,' he affirms. 'She was closely involved in the design process and I was very nervous when it came time to deliver it. When I told her, she said, 'What have you got to be nervous about?' which was quite funny as it was one of the biggest weddings of the year. Not long after, he was asked by Guy to make Madonna's wedding ring, giving him the added responsibility of keeping the couple's designs secret from each other as well as the world's press. 'I kept it simple and made a platinum ring for her that went with her engagement ring. You never really make a big design statement with a wedding ring.' (source: TheLittleStar)

12 December - Madonna signs 'Star' BMW for contest winner
Todd Manning, a resident of Holden, has won a 2001 BMW M5 signed by pop star Madonna in a national contest conducted by BMW to raise funds for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. The announcement was made today by Holly Babich, Manager of Consumer Events for BMW of North America. Mr. Manning's name was randomly selected from more than 30,000 entries that were collected over a five-month period as the M5 toured the country as part of the BMW Ultimate Drive for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, now in its sixth year of raising awareness and funds for breast cancer research and community outreach programs for the Komen Foundation. According to Ms. Babich, "Having a national contest to win this autographed vehicle really added an extra element of excitement to the BMW Ultimate Drive Program this year. Not only could the general public help raise much needed funds for the fight against breast cancer by visiting their local dealerships, but for a recommended donation of $10.00, they also received a chance to win a car signed by a superstar." A life-long love of cars is what motivated Mr. Manning to submit his winning entry. "I have always been a car enthusiast," said Mr. Manning. "As a kid, I made dozens of little model cars, then as an adult my first car was a 1966 BMW 1800 which I bought used. So the idea of owning another BMW that was signed by such a unique entertainer, and used in the short film "Star" is really going to be a kick." (source: BMW, thanx to Madonnarama)

12 December - Stella angry over Madonna's fur coat
Madonna has landed herself in trouble with her designer friend Stella McCartney for wearing a coat made out of lamb foetuses. Dedicated anti-fur campaigner McCartney said she was appalled when she spotted the singer wearing it. Animal rights activists claim lambskin uses the pelts of unborn karakul lambs and Stella has passed on the "facts" to Madonna. She told Glamour magazine: "I've been working on Madonna's honky ass for a very long time. Her thing is she won't wear anything she doesn't eat. "But the other day she was wearing this lamb foetus coat, made from baby lambs that haven't even been born. "It's like wet curls. So I said, 'I didn't know you ate foetuses,' and she was like, 'Eeew!' I haven't seen her in it since." Madonna incurred the wrath of animal rights protesters last year when she wore a £1,000 fox fur hat by Philip Treacy. McCartney, who has narrated a video for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), also has a go at another of her celebrity friends, actress Gwyneth Paltrow. She said: "The only time I've seen Gwyneth with fur she's had a little trim on her coat and I'm always like, 'What the f**k are you doing with that?' "And she's like, 'It's not real fur' and I say, 'Don't give me that shit, you're a clever girl - don't try and act like a stupid girl right now'. "The last time, she guaranteed she wasn't going to do it again, but they're all a bit fickle, aren't they?" She adds: "Listen, I love her, but on the fur thing, people really are very fickle." (source: Ananova)

Holly Valance 11 December - Madonna's breasts are the best
According to Holly Valance (singer of 'Kiss Kiss' and 'Down Boy'), Madonna has the most beautiful breasts in showbiz. She added that Madonna is a big inspiration when writing songs and that she dreams to be able one day to cover all music styles, like Madonna. (translated from Radio Donna)

11 December - Up For Grabs gets nomination
Madonna's West End debut in Up for Grabs at the Wyndham's Theatre is nominated for 'The Planet Hollywood Theatre Event of the Year' at this years Theatregoers' Choice Awards. You can vote here.

11 December - iPod with engraved Madonna autograph for sale
Madonna & Apple Computer have come together to offer her fans a VERY special product just in time for the holidays. Apple's iPod has clearly established itself iPodas the coolest portable music device on earth. It allows you to enjoy up to 4,000 songs in your pocket - perhaps your whole music collection. With its 10-hour lithium polymer battery, it may play longer than you do. And the innovative scroll wheel allows you to find any song in you collection fast and easily - anywhere. How can the iPod get any cooler? How about a beautifully laser engraved Madonna autograph on its metal body?! That's right, for a limited time via, fans will be able order this special version on all configurations of iPod! 5, 10 or 20 GB versions. Mac or PC compatible. It's only available from until January 8, 2003. The holidays are approaching, so it's advised to get your orders in immediately! Once the ordering period expires, the production run will be stopped. Your personal jukebox. A treasured gift. An instant Madonna collectable. For Limited Edition Madonna iPod orders: For general iPod information: (source:

09 December - Swept Away DVD art work
Columbia Menu of Swept Away DVD Cover of Swept Away DVD TriStar will release a DVD of the total box office disaster Swept Away on February 11th. The movie made about $598,645 during its 192-screen theatrical run, which is quite pitiful when you put things into perspective. Other "bombs" that made more money than this flop include:
- Cool as Ice
- Battlefield Earth
- Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever
- The Adventures of Pluto Nash
- Ishtar
The DVD will arrive with an anamorphic widescreen transfer, Dolby Digital 5.1 audio, and the following special features: Director's Commentary, 16 Deleted Scenes with Commentary, Swept Away Movie Special, Trailers. You can check out the menu and box art on the right. (source:, thanx to Madonnapower)

08 December - DADay tops box office
Agent 007 returned to the No. 1 spot at the North American box office over the weekend, while the new comedy sequel "Analyze That" suffered major shrinkage, according to studio estimates issued Sunday. On the traditionally slow weekend that follows the Thanksgiving Day holiday, ticket sales slumped to their lowest level in 12 weeks. But business could pick up next weekend when four new releases enter the fray. This weekend, top honors went to "Die Another Day," the 20th official movie in the James Bond franchise, which sold about $13 million worth of tickets in the Friday-to-Sunday period, hoisting its three-week total to $120.4 million. The film, which stars Pierce Brosnan as the suave sleuth and Halle Berry as love interest Jinx, was released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. It ranked No. 2 last weekend. "Analyze That," a screwball comedy that reunites Robert De Niro as a vexed mobster and Billy Crystal as his therapist, opened at No. 2 with a disappointing $11.3 million. The hit 1999 original "Analyze This" opened with $18 million, and went on to earn $107 million. (source: Yahoo! Movies)

07 December - Exclusive pictures of Madonna's cameo
Verity in Die Another Day - click for more Mad-Eyes is proud to offer you 22 exclusive pictures of Madonna's cameo as Verity in Die Another Day, never seen before. Check them out on the Die Another Day movie page.

05 December - Madonna to produce TV rock drama series
Madonna produces TV rock drama series for ABC. "The Practice"'s Marla Sokoloff will star as a teen idol who takes time off to develop her musical skills by Gary Susman Multi-hyphenate Madonna is adding TV producer to her résumé. According to the Hollywood Reporter, her Maverick Films is teaming with Touchstone TV to produce ''Alyx,'' a drama series for ABC about a teen pop idol. She and her Maverick Films partner Guy Oseary will serve as two of the executive producers on the project, which will star Marla Sokoloff of the network's ''The Practice.'' Sokoloff, who has performed her own songs in Los Angeles clubs and is signed to Madonna's Maverick record label, will play Alyx Mason, a teen queen who abandons the pop scene to develop her musicianship and become more of a rocker. (In other words, less Britney, more Avril.) Sounds like a situation that the executive producer, herself a onetime teen pop icon who reemerged last year wielding a guitar on her Drowned World tour, knows well. (source: Entertainment Weekly)

05 December - VH1 votes Madonna as greatest woman in music history
Madonna has been voted the greatest woman in music history in a poll carried out by music channel VH1. Madonna is the most successful female chart act of all time with worldwide sales of more than 140 million records. Over 750,000 votes were cast in the poll and Madonna was the clear winner with 17%. Kylie Minogue was second place and Celine Dion was third, followed by Whitney Houston and Aretha Franklin. Kate Bush, whose biggest hit was her debut single Wuthering Heights in 1978, was the highest-placed British artist in 10th place. The list of 100 women contained a few surprises - there was no place for "First Lady of Jazz" Ella Fitzgerald, but there was room for the caterwauling Yoko Ono (99). Other British stars present included Annie Lennox (14), Dido (21), Gabrielle (41) and Sharleen Spiteri (49). Eighties favourites Kim Wilde (70) and Bananarama (95) were both there, as were Lulu (93) and the late Kirsty MacColl (74). The Spice Girls were at 44 and Mel C made it in at 58, four places above Geri Halliwell who was at number 62. But Emma Bunton, Mel B and Victoria Beckham were nowhere to be seen. New artists have a strong showing, with Britney Spears in ninth place. Jennifer Lopez was at 17, Pink at 27 and Sophie Ellis Bextor at 69. (source: This Is Nottingham)

04 December - Guy sells movie role for charity
Madonna's husband, Guy Ritchie, is selling a role in his next gangster film, 49th Gate, for charity. The roles, one male, one female, are being sold over the internet in aid of UK Youth. The winners will be flown to Los Angeles, be put up in a hotel for five nights and get the chance to star in the Lock, Stock and Snatch director's next film. (source: UK)
~ The concerning movie is Guy's new Gangster movie '49th Gate'. 17 bids have been made so far. Current highest bid is £2,551.00. The auction still runs till December 13th. Get more info here.

03 December - Madonna pushes Evita style
Hitting shelves was the new book "The Making of Evita," which included an introduction by Madonna and chronicled the 85 costume changes she had for the film "Evita," involving 45 pairs of shoes, 56 pairs of earrings, 39 hats and 42 different hairstyles. Those wanting to look this way themselves could scurry off to Bloomingdale's department store in New York City, which had installed an Evita boutique with decidedly non-peon prices. "It's a little high for being 100% polyester," one shopper said about an item of clothing. "It's a little high." There was also a new line of Estee Lauder makeup inspired by the movie, as well a shade of lipstick similar to that worn by Madonna's Evita. With all this high-end merchandise, it seemed a Madonna wannabe's life was much simpler back in the '80s, when a penny-pinching Madonna fan could emulate her look rather inexpensively at such places as the Madonna Boutique at Macy's in New York. Ah, the days of 10-for-a-dollar rubber bracelets and mesh half-shirts... (source: MTV)

02 December - Madonna and the paparazzi
Click here to see a documentary from Hollywood Raw (dating from 2001) that talks about Madonna's relation to the paparazzi. (thanx to MadMax member Binary)

2 December - Madonna in next Bond movie? *rumour*
In today's London Metro newspaper gossip column, this snippet was mentioned: "Bond actor Pierce Brosnan was so impressed with Madonna's cameo in Die Another Day he made her agree to co-star in the next film - but she only wants to be a baddie." (source: TheLittleStar)

02 December - Swept Away is a hit... for Hermes
Madonna may have failed to ignite the imaginations of either audiences or critics with their latest cinematic offering, Swept Away, but the film was a hit in an unlikely quarter - French fashion house Hermes. Since the woman Guy Ritchie calls 'the missus' wore a green and gold silk Hermes scarf in her latest film, the shop has been inundated with requests for the garment. 'They've been flying off the shelves,' chuckles our man between the coat-hangers. 'Everyone was pretty surprised but obviously chuffed. Having Madonna wear one of your pieces in a movie - however bad - is the kind of advertising you just can't buy.' This kind of indirect celebrity endorsement seems to be getting more and more popular – Saks in New York recently reported a huge increase in interest in the items that Winona tried to shoplift from their store. (source: PeopleNews)

02 December - Brosnan on Madonna
Q: How was it having Madonna on set?
PB: It was great. Everyone had high expectations and everyone's a fan of her work. I thought it was a great casting coup to get her in to do this role and that she should sing the song as well. She came in, she was very professional and she came and she went.
Q: Is it true you were singing "Like A Virgin?"
PB: We were in the back trailer, all hanging out and singing "Like A Virgin." Then I was on the set and I had the sword and she was over there lining up the shot and I started singing "Like a Virgin" and she turned around and thought I was dissing her. She said, "Are you dissing me?" "No, I'm not dissing you, no." And that's when you (director Lee Tamahori) came over and asked "What's going on here?" She got a bit prickly over that thing, but we got it sorted out. It was fine. (source: Yahoo Movies, thanx to AbsMad)

02 December - Bond actors star-struck by Madonna
Though she has a degree in English literature, Rosamund Pike doubts she'll ever use it to teach. "Parents would be telling each other 'The Bond girl is teaching my son.' Somehow it just doesn't work," says Pike, who plays the cool British spy Miranda Frost in Die Another Day. "I knew that this role would change my life. If you join the Bond family, you go into it with your eyes open." In the early versions of Die Another Day, Frost was not a love interest for Bond. Pike was relieved when that changed, giving her a not-so-frosty tumble with Pierce Brosnan in an ice palace in Iceland. "I didn't want to go down in cinema history as the only girl in a Bond film who didn't get to seduce Bond." She is proud to point out that she is "the first British girl to be paired with Pierce." Pike says she was thrilled to share screen time in Die Another Day with Halle Berry, Madonna and Judi Dench, three women she admires. "Halle is a tower of strength. She has had a very rough life and what makes her so special is how up front she is about her past misfortunes. "If I ever find myself in a tricky situation, I hope I can be as brave and candid as she continues to be." Pike insists she was far from the only person to be star-struck by Madonna, who plays a fencing instructor in Die Another Day. "Even (director) Lee Tamahori was star-struck. He was noticeably excited the day Madonna filmed her scene. We all were." Pike says Dench, who plays Bond's boss M, has been an icon of hers for years. "Judi is one of the most respected actors in the business and she proved to be one of the most humble which, in turn, is humbling for everyone who works with her." (source:, thanx to AbsMad)

01 December - DVD details for Die Another Day
According to 'Die Another Day' will be released on DVD on 05/05/2003. Following special features still have to be confirmed:
Deleted Scenes with commentary by Director - Audio Commentary: Audio Intelligence - Audio Commentary: Audio Intelligence 2 - MI6 Data Stream - trivia tracks with seamless links to featurettes - Inside Die Another Day documentary - Multi angle action and stunt sequences - multi angle view of opening credits - Scene evolutions - Equipment Briefing - Making of documentary 1 - Making of documentary 2 - Theatrical trailer - TV spot - Madonna music video - A Day In the Live (MTV Special) - Behind the scenes of the Madonna music video. (source: MLVC mailing list)

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