Press Pictures: W.E. Press Conference
Press Pictures: W.E. Premiere

Madonna nervous of film critics

Madonna - 'one of the most famous people in the world' as she was introduced - admits she's nervous and feels pressure about how W.E., her second feature film as a director, will be received.
'Of course I do because I knew and I had the same kind of pressure when I began my music career,' said the Material Girl, 53, femininely dressed in a red dress at her TIFF press conference on Monday afternoon before the movie's gala screening on Monday night. 'And I was nervous and I didn't know what to expect and people didn't know what to expect. I had to earn my way in the world being taken seriously in the music department and now I'm well aware that I have to do the same in the world of film.'
But she only cares what the critics say about the luxurious looking film about an unhappily married Park Avenue woman named Wally (Abbie Cornish) obsessed with King Edward VIII's decision in the '30s to abdicate the throne for a life with American divorcee Wallis Simpson (Andrea Riseborough) if it's fair criticism.
'I can tell when people are reviewing my film and when they're reviewing me personally. I welcome criticism of my film when it's viewed as an artistic form and not when people are mentioning things about my personal life or my achievements in any other field because they're irrelevant.'
Madge, no wallflower, says she didn't think of herself per se as 'the boss' on the film set but rather 'the storyteller. The person that was there to collaborate with a group of very talented people who were going to help me tell my story.'
In fact, she says she would strum a guitar and make up songs to entertain the cast and crew between shots.
'It was a way to pass time. When it was pouring down rain and you were shooting outside and you were stuck inside some grey, dirty shack waiting for the sun to come out, what can you do but make up a song? (Starts singing) 'We're making a movie, isn't it groovy, welcome to my house.' That was one of them.'
She also said before each shot involved paying attention to detail to the gorgeous costumes, jewelry and hairstyles worn by both Cornish and Riseborough.
'I loved feeling a connection with them before we began a day of shooting,' said Madonna, who also had Cornish and Riseborough working out with her trainers. 'Finding an excuse to touch them was my ritual.'
Her choice to use the Sex Pistols song Pretty Vacant in a party scene involving Simpson and the King in the '30s was simple, she said: 'I think that King Edward the 8th was very punk rock. I thought he was quite rebellious and cutting edge in his point of view about life and how to run the empire. And I thought using the Sex Pistols was a perfect narration to the monarchy at the time and what they were doing drinking Benzedrine cocktails while watching a Charlie Chaplin film.'
And when asked if Johnny Rotten - aka John Lydon, who's also in a film, Sons of Norway, at this year's TIFF - knows about the song's inclusion in W.E, she joked: 'Of course he knows, I had to pay him!'
W.E. is being released in December which is Oscar season and Madonna joked: 'My legs and my fingers are crossed.'

From Toronto Sun


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