Madonna biopic is not making headway at Universal

The pop icon, who recently announced a world tour, was set to helm the film, which stars Julia Garner.

Madonna’s biopic about her own life, which the pop icon was set to co-write and direct at Universal, is stuck in the studio and no longer in development, IndieWire has learned.

Julia Garner was set to play the “Like a Virgin” singer in the film, but speculation that the film was on hold began when Madonna announced a world tour that will begin in July. Madonna and Universal announced the project back in 2020, but development stalled last year. Diablo Cody (Juno, Jagged Little Pill musical) wrote the screenplay, with editing by Erin Cressida Wilson. Madonna even shared pictures of her writing sessions with Cody after the project was announced.

Garner, known for “Inventing Anna” and “Ozark,” landed the role after a group of young starlets reportedly attended a song-and-dance boot camp. Other stars such as Bebe Rexha, Florence Pugh and Alexa Demie also attended and auditioned for the role.

Universal had no comment. Representatives for Madonna and Garner did not respond to a request for comment.

Variety, which first broke the news, said via Insider that Madonna still has a desire to someday make a movie about her life.

Amy Pascal co-produced the Madonna biopic alongside executive producers Sara Zambreno and Madonna’s longtime manager Guy Oseary.

Madonna previously directed Filth and Wisdom (2008) and WE (2011). a musician, a dancer — a human being trying to make his way in this world.” Older hints on social media suggested the film would be called Little Sparrow. THR had also previously reported that early drafts of the film ended around the time of the 1990 Blond Ambition tour.

Before Madonna took on the director’s role, Universal once flirted with an adaptation of a biopic titled “Blond Ambition,” written by Elyse Hollander, which topped the Blacklist of Most Recommended Unproduced Screenplays, prompting Madonna to respond with the words: “Only I can tell my story.”

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Lindsay Lowe

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