Guy Ritchie

Madonna: ‘Penn And Ritchie Encouraged Film Career’

Pop superstar Madonna has credited her “very talented” ex-husbands Sean Penn and Guy Ritchie with inspiring her to pursue a career as a director.

The Like A Virgin hitmaker makes her feature film directorial debut with W.E., a royal drama documenting the scandalous relationshipbetween Britain’s King Edward VIII and American divorcee Wallis Simpson. The monarch abdicated from his royal position in 1936 after their love affair became public.
The movie had its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival in Italy on Thursday (01Sep11), when Madonna was joined by her leadingladies Abbie Cornish and Andrea Riseborough to celebrate its launch.

And Madonna, who has previously had mixed reactions to her attempts as an actress, made sure to give thanks to her exes, actor/director Penn and Sherlock Holmes filmmaker Ritchie, for encouraging her to step behind the camera over the years.

Speaking at a news conference, she told reporters, “I am and was attracted to very creative people, which is why I married Sean Penn and Guy Ritchie, two very talented directors. They both encouraged me as a director and as a creative person to do what I did, and they were both very supportive.” However, Madonna’s W.E. has drawn mixed reviews from Venice Film Festival critics – Britain’s Daily Telegraph reviewer admitted the biopic was “better than expected”, although “not without amusing moments”, while The Guardian’s writer blasted the drama as “a primped and simpering folly”.

Madonna was married to Oscar winner Penn for four years from 1985 and ended her eight-year union with British director Ritchie in 2008.

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