When it came to creating a Madonna biopic, the legendary singer took matters into her own hands.
The Queen of Pop was set to direct a film about her life, decades-long career, and journey as an artist. She's producing, too, along with a team that includes Amy Pascal (Little Women, Spider-Man: Homecoming).
Madonna's decision to helm the film was rare, as Variety pointed out superstar biopic subjects are usually only tangentially involved in the project, or serve as creative consultants. (Think Queen with Bohemian Rhapsody or Elton John with Rocketman.) But for the "Holiday" singer, it was important that she be integral in telling her own story for the screen.
But according to Variety, due to the singer's upcoming world tour this year, the biopic has officially been scrapped and is no longer moving forward at Universal.
"I want to convey the incredible journey that life has taken me on as an artist, a musician, a dancer—a human being, trying to make her way in this world," she said in a statement ahead of the film's cancellation. "The focus of this film will always be music. Music has kept me going and art has kept me alive. There are so many untold and inspiring stories and who better to tell it than me. It's essential to share the roller coaster ride of my life with my voice and vision."
Madonna has played filmmaker before, having directed the 2011 royal drama W.E. about Wallis Simpson and Edward VIII's romance, and 2008's Filth and Wisdom about three struggling bohemian flatmates in London.
Below, everything we knew regarding the doomed biopic.
Who was set to portray the material girl?
According to Variety, Inventing Anna and Ozark star Julia Garner has been cast to play Madonna in the upcoming biopic. The actress was reportedly Madonna's favorite from "over a dozen candidates" amid a highly competitive and grueling casting process that fans dubbed "Madonna Boot Camp". While the outlet reports Garner hasn't officially accepted the offer, her team is expected to sign any day now. Fellow actresses and musicians such as Alexa Demie, Florence Pugh, and Sky Ferreira, were all rumored to have auditioned for the role.
Diablo Cody was previously involved.
The Oscar-winning screenwriter behind Juno, Jennifer's Body, and Young Adult did help co-write the script alongside Madonna for the upcoming feature but "moved on" to other projects, according to Entertainment Weekly.
Madonna gave fans a glimpse at the screenwriting process.
The "Holiday" singer has shared a few behind-the-scenes glimpses of the early production process behind the biopic on Instagram. "When you’re stuck in a house with multiple injuries what do you do?" wrote Madonna back in 2021. "Write a Screenplay with Diablo Cody about..............📖🎥🎬🎤🎼🖤?"
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