Madonna biopic ‘Blond Ambition’ finds a home at Universal Pictures

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A good biopic can be a win for studios both critically and commercially, so it’s no surprise that a film about one of the music industry’s most iconic figures is suddenly gaining momentum.

Universal Pictures has picked up the rights to Blond Ambition, a script for a film that chronicles pop star Madonna’s early years in the New York City music scene.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the script penned by Elyssa Hollander follows the singer — who was born Madonna Louise Ciccone — while she is “struggling in a business that treats women badly, while also dealing with a burgeoning love life and the first hints of fame.” The script was one of the top screenplays featured on last year’s edition of The Black List, the annual industry report on the best un-produced scripts circulating around studios.

Fifty Shades of Grey producer Michael De Luca will serve as a producer on Blond Ambition, along with Brett Ratner and his RatPac Entertainment production company. No director is attached at this point. The script for Blond Ambition is the first feature screenplay from Hollander, who previously worked as an assistant to four-time Academy Award winner Alejandro G. Inarritu, who directed The Revenant, Birdman, and Babel.

The best-selling female music artist of all time, Madonna is also among the top five best-selling music artists overall. She released her first, self-titled album in 1983, then followed it with a long list of critical and commercial successes, including 1998’s Ray of Light and 2005’s Confessions on a Dance Floor, which both won Grammy Awards. She also appeared in several films over the years, including 1985’s Desperately Seeking Susan, 1990’s Dick Tracy, and the 1996 film Evita, which earned her a Golden Globe Award.

The script for Blond Ambition is named after Madonna’s famous 1990 tour, which kicked off in April of that year and ran through August. It generated widespread acclaim — and no small amount of controversy — that only added to her legacy.