Madonna news - Jan. 2011


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28 January - Madonna's movie won't be screened in Cannes

A rep for IMGlobal says a French report claiming the film would appear at the festival is false.

Madonna's feature film W.E. will not be screening as part of the Festival de Cannes in May, according to IMGlobal, the sales agent that is handling the film. While the French newspaper Le Parisien/Aujourd'hui said on Thursday that the film would appear at the festival, the Madonna-directed movie, which is currently in post-production, it is not expected to be completed in time for Cannes and is instead aiming for a bow on the fall film circuit.

Madonna is expected to visit Berlin next month to host a private screening of select footage for foreign distributors attending the European Film Market. W.E. stars Abbie Cornish and Oscar Isaac in parallel stories about the love affair between Wallis Simpson and King Edward VIII as well as one about a modern romance.

The official selection of films that will appear at Cannes won't be announced by artistic director Thierry Fremaux until April. (source: The Hollywood Reporter)


24 January - Osbourne is Madonna's new Material Girl?

Kelly OsbourneKelly Osbourne is set to replace Taylor Momsen as the new face of Madonna's Material Girl clothing line, according to a new report. The pop superstar recently launched an online search for the next poster girl for the fashion collection, encouraging fans to vote for their favourite through the brand's website. Singer-turned-reality TV star Osbourne is now said to be in the lead to take over from the Gossip Girl actress to front the next advertising campaign for the range, which is designed by Madonna and her daughter Lourdes. A source tells Britain's Sunday Mirror, "Kelly's always been a massive fan of Madonna and recently heard Lourdes idolised her, which she was very flattered by. It's a huge coup." (source: ContactMusic)


21 January - Madonna to give sneak preview of film project at Berlin festival

Madonna filming W.E.Madonna is to give a sneak preview of her latest film project during the Berlin Film Festival next month, organizers said Thursday, confirming media reports.

The 52-year-old singer and actress is to show excerpts from her project, entitled W.E., about the relationship between British king Edward VIII and American socialite Wallis Simpson during the 1930s, B.Z. newspaper reported.

The private screening will reportedly take place on the first weekend of the Berlinale festival. The full film is not to be shown until the Cannes film festival in May.

The first film directed by Madonna - a romantic comedy entitled Filth and Wisdom - was screened at the Berlin film festival three years ago. (source: Earthtimes.org)


11 January - Madonna discusses the future of Raising Malawi

From Madonna.com:
Madonna, whose Raising Malawi charity has made substantial inroads helping over a million children orphaned from the AIDS epidemic in that African nation, is stepping up the pace considerably on all fronts - especially in regard to her plans for building the Raising Malawi Academy for Girls.

Madonna issued the following statement this morning to the Huffington Post

"I remain deeply committed and am more passionate than ever about helping the children of Malawi - especially the girls. In a country where only 33% of Malawian girls attend secondary school, I realize that the plans we had in place for the Raising Malawi Academy for Girls simply would not serve enough children. My original vision is now on a much bigger scale. I want to reach thousands not hundreds of girls. I want to do more and I want to do it better. While I am grateful to all the people who have given me guidance and support up until now, we are in the process of implementing several changes and additions to the management of Raising Malawi in both the US and Malawi. I am also working with Trevor Neilson and his team at Global Philanthropy Group to shift the strategies that we had in place so that we can accomplish our goals with more efficiency as we continue to consult with our government partners in Malawi. This is a larger challenge than I thought, but I welcome it. We are focused on an approach which builds schools within communities across the country. We are currently determining the size, location, staffing and curriculum of the schools. I will continue to monitor the process of reaching these goals here and through my ongoing visits to Malawi."

Neilson, whose company Global Philanthropy Group advises some of the world's leading philanthropists, was positive about the shift in strategy. "Raising Malawi's new community-based approach will provide the opportunity for many more girls to receive a quality education. We are focused on ensuring the most efficient implementation of this new strategy in collaboration with Raising Malawi's partners on the ground." Neilson also noted the many achievements of Raising Malawi including the construction of a model orphan care center in partnership with Malawi's largest community-based organization as well as assistance to thousands of HIV+ children and caregivers through life saving medical treatments and daily nutritious meals and nutrition supplements. Additional programming has also provided thousands of children and caregivers in the south of the country with access to clean water through the implementation of piped safe water and the construction of new boreholes.


10 January - Moments of 2010: #10 Madonna opens Hard Candy Fitness Center

Being a famous dancer, an addict to daily work-outs and a clever business woman, Madonna's next venture didn't come as a big surprise. In October 2010, it was announced that she, manager Guy Oseary and venture capitalists New Evolution Ventures (NEV) partnered up to open a chain of fitness centers around the world unde the name Hard Candy Fitness Centers. "Our goal is to create an environment inspired by Madonna's vision and high standards of what the ideal gym would be. Hard Candy Fitness will be a reflection of Madonna's point of view and will reflect her input on every detail including music space, light and other design cues. Madonna's touch will be everywhere." stated NEV Chairman Mark Mastrov.

The first fitness center opens in Mexico City on November 29th. The complex has a surface of 2500 m² and a capacity of maximum 2500 people. It features a cardiovascular area (80 teams), a free integrated weight area, personal training, spinning rooms, group fitness, mind-body clinic and more. Madonna attends the grand opening and gives the first gym class, together with some of her tour dancers. "I believe in hard work and if you have a goal and you want something bad enough, you're gonna work hard for it. I think anybody can relate to that," she comments on the red carpet. When asked about her current projects, she replies that she's finishing her movie [W.E.] and will then start working on a new record.

A week after the opening it is announced that a second gym will open in Moscow mid-March 2011. At least 10 additional Hard Candy locations are expected to follow in Russia, Brazil, Argentina, Europe and Asia.

Madonna at the opening of Hard Candy Fitness Center in Mexico Madonna at the opening of Hard Candy Fitness Center in Mexico Madonna at the opening of Hard Candy Fitness Center in Mexico Madonna at the opening of Hard Candy Fitness Center in Mexico Madonna at the opening of Hard Candy Fitness Center in Mexico Madonna at the opening of Hard Candy Fitness Center in Mexico


09 January - Moments of 2010: #9 Madonna demo songs surface online

2010 might not have given us new Madonna music, it did give us some "old new" music. In recent years, especially in periods without much Madonna news, there were often unreleased tracks and demo songs leaking onto the Internet. But never did we get as many as in September 2010. Some we had heard of before, others were totally 'new'. All are from recording sessions of the past decade, with mostly Mirwais, Timbaland and Paul Oakenfold.

It's So Cool: a demo from American Life, a Mirwais/Monte Pittman collaboration. Two versions have leaked, both different from the iTunes bonus track, which Paul Oakenfold reworked for Celebration.
Miss You: a demo from American Life, most likely a Mirwais collaboration.
If You Go Away: recorded during the Hello Suckers! sessions, a cover based on Jacques Brel's "Ne Me Quitte Pas", a standard recorded by a lot of artists.
Pala Tute: the track that everyone confused with "La La" or "Latte", which was in fact a song written around "Lela Pala Tute", the gypsy song that was performed on Live Earth and Sticky & Sweet.
Infinity: a demo from Hard Candy by Timbaland. The lyrics were later re-used for Give It 2 Me, while the melody was reworked to fit the Neptunes' track.
Animal: a demo from Hard Candy, most likely a Timbaland collaboration.
Across The Sky: a demo from Hard Candy, a Timberlake/Timbaland collaboration, a much clearer, but slightly different version from the leak earlier this year.
Broken (I'm Sorry): a demo from the Paul Oakenfold sessions in the Spring of 2009, which was intended for Celebration. It features a lot of lyrical references to older Madonna songs.


08 January - Moments of 2010: #8 Madonna is face of D&G collection

Since meeting them on the set of Dick Tracy, Madonna has struck a tight friendship with Italian top designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana. They once designed the entire wardrobe for the Girlie Show. In August 2009, Madonna celebrated her birthday together with the designer duo on a yacht in Italy. Soon after, they announced that Madonna would be the face of their new collection.

In December 2009, Vanity Fair previewed the first pictures of the Spring/Summer 2010 collection, all black & white shots by Steven Klein, featuring Madonna as an Italian housewife, with an emphasis on Mediterranean heritage and classic Italian sensuality. The mood isn't unlike a film from the days of Italian Neorealism. Discussing why Madonna was the perfect match for the collection, Stefano Gabbana explains: "She loved the collection. She is passionate and impressively knowledgeable about Italian cinema.

In the spring of 2010, with the first campaign in full mood, they take it one step further. Ever the entrepreneur, Madonna doesn't contend with being the face of a collection, but steps in as one of the designers for an eyewear collection, which is baptized MDG. "Designing an eyewear line with Madonna was a new experience for us. The oversized and wraparound designs are sexy and very feminine, like our clothes. Madonna's creative contribution and unique point of view were key, even in designing the MDG logo." Shot in New York by Steven Klein and under art direction of Fabien Baron, the ad campaign features Madonna as the mysterious and sensual star of a noir film caught on camera in the company of an intriguing man played by super model Tyson Ballou. To lend a cinematographic feel, the campaign was shot with a video camera and the snapshots appear as frames of a short film while the layout of the prints recalls that of an old-fashioned movie film.

The Italian housewife returns again for the Autumn/Winter 2010 womenswear collection. This time we meet the rest of the family, with young actor and model Max Schneider featuring as one of the main characters. Steven Klein is once again on board for the photoshoot, which takes place in Harlem, NYC.

In September follows yet another racy Dolce&Gabbana advert, this time while wearing an incredibly low-cut black body suit and hold-up stockings. Accessorised with sunglasses, a crucifix and a red string Kabbalah bracelet, she prowls around an unmade bed with her cleavage threatening to spill out of her lingerie. In another frame, she reclines on white sheets accompanied by a black and white cat.

Madonna for D&G Spring/Summer 2010 collection Madonna for D&G Spring/Summer 2010 collection Madonna for D&G Spring/Summer 2010 collection Madonna for D&G Spring/Summer 2010 collection Madonna for MDG Eyewear collection Madonna for MDG Eyewear collection Madonna for D&G Autumn/Winter 2010 collection Madonna for D&G Autumn/Winter 2010 collection Madonna for D&G Autumn/Winter 2010 collection Madonna for D&G Autumn/Winter 2010 collection Madonna for D&G Autumn/Winter 2010 collection Madonna for D&G Autumn/Winter 2010 collection


07 January - Moments of 2010: #7 Madonna directs W.E. movie

From all her different projects and initiatives, her acting career is not really her biggest success. So Madonna figured she might be better at the other side of the camera, even if it was just to get even to her ex-hubby. In 2008, she got her feet wet with the shortfilm Filth & Wisdom, which had only a limited release. In 2010 however, she spends most of her time directing a full-length movie, the biopic W.E.. It tells the story of King Edward VIII, who has an affair with American divorcée Wally Simpson, leading him to abdicate from the British throne. A parallel storyline describes the contemporary romance between a married woman and a Russian security guard. The screenplay is written by Madonna and Alek Keshishian (who previously directed Truth Or Dare).

The casting doesn't go without problems. Vera Farmiga and Ewan McGregor were originally cast respectively for the roles of Wallis Simpson and King Edward VIII, but backed out early. Amy Adams was also considered for the role of Simpson but in the end, the part went to Andrea Riseborough. James D'Arcy takes the role of King Edward VIII, while Abbie Cornish gets the leading role of Wally Winthrop. There are also rumours about a cameo for daughter Lola.

Over the summer, Madonna films at various locations in New York, London, Paris and the French Riviera, but surprisingly little information reaches the press. One time when filming in Central Park, a nearby band is noisily rehearsing for a concert in the park. Madonna takes off her headphones and jogs towards them and asks if they can hold off for an hour. When she comes back, she giggles "You know what they were called? Ween. I don’t know, I think I’m just overtired, I find that hilarious."

Another time, we hear about Madonna contacting the National Museum of Costume at Dumfries, to borrow a replica of the Duchess of Windsor's wedding outfit, which was on display at the museum. The replica was originally made for the TV production Wallis and Edward. The National Museum is happy to oblige, so Abbie Cornish can wear it as one of her 80 outfits for the movie.

Currently, the movie is in post-production and is expected for release in 2011.

Madonna filming W.E. Madonna filming W.E. Madonna filming W.E. Madonna filming W.E. Madonna filming W.E.


07 January - Next venture: Madonna as nightclub owner?

According to The Telegraph, Madonna has held talks with the Malaysian tycoon Tony Fernandes about investing in his Aura Mayfair nightclubs.

Having opened the first of a worldwide chain of fitness centres in Mexico last year, Madonna is to add another string to her bow. Mandrake can disclose that the American pop singer is involved in negotiations about becoming a player in the London nightclub scene. "Madonna sees it as a natural move," says one of her associates. "She has ambitious plans." In Mayfair on Thursday night, she met Tony Fernandes, the Malaysian entrepreneur, who is the majority shareholder in the Aura group of nightspots, to discuss buying a stake in the company.

Aura Mayfair, to which Madonna, 52, is a regular visitor, runs events after Formula One Grand Prix races around the world. Fernandes, 46, who made his fortune through the no-frills AirAsia airline, is the team principal of the Lotus Racing team.

If the Queen of Pop does become involved in Aura, she would become a rival Mayfair landlord to her former husband, Guy Ritchie, 42, who owns The Punchbowl pub. Madonna unveiled the Hard Candy Fitness gym in Mexico City in November. She had earlier branched out into other areas including writing children's books, designing clothes and making wine.


06 January - Moments of 2010: #6 Photoshoot for Interview Magazine
In 2010, Madonna might not have treated us to any new music, but she really couldn't do without a good photoshoot. Appearing in the May issue of Interview Magazine, Madonna is shot by the photographers duo Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott and the result is absolutely stunning. The black & white shots feature a sexy Madonna in leather-clad outfits with revealing cleavage, eye-patch, crucifix and cigarette. It can easily be labelled as one of her best photoshoots of the past decade. Fabien Baron filmed the photoshoot; watch his contribution below.

The pictures are posted next to an interview of film maker Gus Van Sant with Madonna. They talk mostly about movies (Van Sant's movie 'Milk' and Madonna's upcoming movie project W.E.), but they also discuss her early career and her involvement in Malawi. Madonna makes some interesting comments on the music industry which sheds a different light on her Live Nation deal: "I don't have a record deal right now with anybody. I don't know how I'm going to get my music out the next time I make a record. I'm going to have to reinvent the wheel."

Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine Madonna in Interview Magazine


05 January - Moments of 2010: #5 Madonna and Lola launch Material Girl clothing line

Three years after her H&M 'M by Madonna' clothing line, Madonna ventures again into fashion. She teams up with none less than her teenage daughter Lourdes to design an affordable junior's clothing line which is distributed through Macy's as of August 2010. Baptized Material Girl, the line features jeans, shoes, fingerless gloves, necklaces and other accessories. Many of the pieces are inspired by Madonna and her daughter's dance roots.

Late March, Madonna reveals during an interview that Lola has done most of the work for the fashion line. Inspired by her mum and by mum's friend and designer Stella McCartney, Lola shows off her own daring style when she appears at the Nine movie premiere in fishnets, a lace tutu miniskirt, a leather jacket, black Doc Martens, layered necklaces, black fingerless gloves, and jade green nail polish.

While Lola's style might be the driving style for the Material Girl line, Madonna admits she doesn't always approve of the way her daughter dresses: "I always have two reactions when Lola comes into my room with an outfit on: One is, 'Oh my God, she looks amazing, what incredible style.' And then my second reaction is, 'She's dressed completely inappropriately for school'."

Gossip Girl actress Taylor Momsen was asked to be the face of the fashion line. During the photoshoot in May, Madonna takes over and starts styling and photographing Taylor herself. For the launch on August 3, Taylor Momsen performs at the Macy's store in New York City. A month later (Sept. 22nd), Madonna and Lola further promote Material Girl on Macy's pink carpet in New York.

In December 2010, it is announced that Material Girl will go international, starting with a collection for HBC, one of Canada's leading fashion retailers, in the spring of 2011.

Madonna announcing the Material Girl Collection Madonna and Lourdes at the second annual Bent On Learning benefit Taylor Momsen for Material Girl, shot by Madonna Madonna shoots Taylor Momsen for Material Girl Madonna, Lola during the photoshoot for Material Girl


04 January - Moments of 2010: #4 Glee: The Power Of Madonna

When a TV show that has gay camp and musical-style singing as their main ingredients, decides to dedicate an entire episode to one diva, it's no surprise the unanimous answer is Madonna. Glee, the majorly popular TV show about a high school music club, aired on US TV channel Fox, decides in their first season to use the songs of Madonna to show their power to glee club after Will catches the boys bullying the girls and wants to show them how to be more respectful. Episode 1.15 - titled The Power Of Madonna, written and directed by series creator Ryan Murphy - covers 8 Madonna tracks, including Ray Of Light, 4 Minutes, Like A Prayer and Like A Virgin. Most hyped is the performance of Vogue by Sue Sylvester (played by Jane Lynch). It's the cheerleading coach who had demanded that Madonna's music be played over the school intercom system, hoping to empower her Cheerios in their cheerleading routines. A music video was made as a homage to the iconic David Fincher video.

The episode is watched by nearly 13 million American viewers and another 2 million British viewers. In Australia, Glee attains a new ratings high, winning its timeslot in all key demographics. Critics adore The Power Of Madonna, with Entertainment Weekly calling it "one of the best hours of TV you're likely to see all year". Jane Lynch receives a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her performance in the episode. But the best recognition for the Glee cast comes from the queen herself, when Madonna calls the episode "brilliant on every level".

Following the success of the Madonna episode, an EP with studio versions of the 8 performed songs is released under the title Glee: The Music, The Power of Madonna. The iTunes edition features Burning Up as bonus track, which was not performed in the episode. In its first week of release (April 20th, 2010), Glee: The Music, The Power of Madonna reaches #1 on the Billboard 200, with 98,000 copies sold.


03 January - Moments of 2010: #3 Release of Sticky & Sweet Tour on DVD

On April 6th, 2010, Madonna releases her Sticky & Sweet Tour on DVD. Europe gets the release a week earlier. The DVD contains the show, as recorded in Buenos Aires, Argentina on December 7th and 8th, 2008 by Nathan Rissman, who also directed the documentary I Am Because We Are. Although the DVD comes months after the end of the 2009 tour leg, the 2009 changes of the show, such as the performances of Holiday, Dress You Up and Frozen, are not included. On the other hand, fans get to see Don't Cry For Me Argentina, which was only performed in the Argentine capital.

Just like previous DVD releases The Confessions Tour and I'm Going To Tell You A Secret, this release is accompanied by a CD with a selection of 13 live tracks, mostly concentrating on the Hard Candy album. The digital version on iTunes contains 4 bonus tracks: Heartbeat, Borderline, 4 Minutes & Ray Of Light; the Amazon.com MP3 version substitutes Heartbeat with Miles Away.

Since Madonna's contract with Warner ended with Celebration, this is the first release under Live Nation, though Warner was asked to cover the distribution.

The CD/DVD reaches #17 in the UK with selling above 12,000 copies, while in the US it becomes Madonna's first live release to crack the top 10, entering at #10 with sales of 28,000 copies.


02 January - Moments of 2010: #2 Humanitarian projects in Brazil and Malawi

In 2010, Madonna continued to invest time and money into humanitarian projects.

In February, Madonna visits Brazil, home country to her boyfriend Jesus Luz. She supervises a project in Rio for Success For Kids (previously known as Spirituality For Kids, a children's charity set up by Madonna's close friend Karen Berg, mother of Rabbi Michael Berg, leader of the Kabbalah Centre). Madonna hopes the project will see many impoverished youngsters get the chance to go to school. The program will start with 10 schools, with plans to expand to 150 in Rio and Sao Paulo.

Madonna, Jesus and her daughters combine the humanitarian work with a visit to the famous Carnival in Rio.

Early April, Madonna takes Lourdes, David and Mercy to Malawi for a weeklong chaity tour. She visits the Millennium Village, a United Nations initiative in the central border district west of Lilongwe. A day later, she lays the first brick of her Raising Malawi Academy for Girls. "It has always been my dream to train women leaders who can help develop the country," Madonna said during the event, "I grew up as a poor girl with my mother, I had no chance for good education. It is my aim to see Malawian girls get the right education."

Madonna, her two children (Lola & Mercy) and Jesus @ Rio Carnival Madonna and Gerard Butler @ Rio Carnival Madonna @ Rio Carnival Madonna poses with her Malawian team Madonna tests a new water pump at her project in Malawi Madonna and Mercy in Malawi


01 January - Moments of 2010: #1 Madonna performs for Haiti

Mad-Eyes wishes you all the very best for 2011!

To say 2010 was a quiet Madonna year would be an understatement. After her successful Sticky & Sweet Tour, Madonna takes a much needed break and focuses on a range of different projects. In the next few days, Mad-Eyes takes a look at the 10 best Madonna moments of the past year.

On January 23, 2010, Madonna takes part in the Hope For Haiti telethon. Earlier that month, Haiti got hit by a severe earthquake. The telethon is organized and hosted by George Clooney to help raise millions for the victims of the devastating earthquake. Madonna issues a statement asking her fans to contribute to the fund raising. She donates $ 250,000 to Partners in Health, one of Haiti's leading health care providers. During the telethon she performs an acoustic version of Like A Prayer, backed up by her guitarist Monte Pittman and a choir. Afterwards she tweets: "I'm thrilled to have been a part of such a special night. It's only the beginning of what we all need to do to help rebuild Haiti." It would be her only live performance in 2010.

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