The moviemaker was relatively unknown when he began dating the superstar in 1998, shortly after the release of his first full-length film, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.
And Ritchie admits that he was only just starting to adjust to life as a celebrity when he embarked on his new relationship - and was unprepared for the level of attention that dating Madonna brought with it.
He says, 'I'd been with (Madonna) for two years before (we got married). That changed my life more than anything in my career because she is hugely famous. It has an enormous impact on the life of whoever she is with. Enormous. An unimaginable impact.'
'I had just had a hit movie, and then this other thing came along that completely trumped it.'