There’s no greater power than the power to say goodbye to what could have been Madonna’s self-directed biopic about her life and career.
EW can confirm that the self-titled film, originally set to be released by Universal, is no longer progressing in the studio as Madonna prepares for her Celebration world tour.
A separate source also tells EW that Madonna still plans to make the movie someday, though her focus is currently on the upcoming concert series that will take place in 35 cities around the world in 2023.
Todd Owyoung/NBC via Getty Images
Varietywho first reported news of the film’s indefinite hiatus indicated so Ozark actress Julia Garner was set to star in the film as Madonna, though no official announcement has ever been made. Garner’s representatives did not immediately respond to EW’s request for comment.
In January 2022, EW reported that exclusively Uncut gems star Julia TUSEN met with Madonna to discuss possibly playing her lifelong friend and actress Debi Mazar, who first met the artist in an elevator at New York City’s Danceteria nightclub in the ’80s.
The first iteration of the film had been in development for years, with Madonna working on an original draft with Oscar-winning screenwriter Diablo Cody. However, Cody moved on to other projects after she completed the screenplay. Erin Wilson eventually stepped in to continue working on the story with the singer-songwriter.
Cindy Ord/Getty; Kevin Mazur/WireImage julia TUSEN; Debi Mazar and Madonna
According to Madonna, the film would describe her “struggle as a performer trying to survive as a woman in a man’s world. She called the journey a “happy, sad, mad, crazy, good, bad and ugly” story of her rise to stardom.
In several social media posts in 2020, Madonna and Cody said they aspired to document her life in New York City, composing “Like a Prayer,” making Evitaand her association with Jose Gutierez Xtravaganza and Luis Xtravaganza of the Harlem ballroom scene, who inspired and contributed to the success of her 1990 hit “Vogue.”
Madonna starts on her Celebration world tour with special guest Bob the Drag Queen (winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race season 8) from July.
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