“Nobody knows what I know and what I have seen. Only I can tell my story. Anyone else who tries is a charlatan and a fool. . Looking for instant gratification without doing the work. This is a disease in our society.” – Madonna
Michael De Luca, who produced Fifty Shades of Grey for Universal, is attached to produce along with Brett Ratner’s RatPac Entertainment. John Zaozirny of Bellvue Productions will also produce.
The story is set in early 1980s New York as Madonna Louise Ciccone works on her first album, struggling in a business that treats women badly, while also dealing with a burgeoning love life and the first hints of fame.
Madonna moved to New York from Michigan in 1978 to pursue dance but segued to singing and writing songs. After failing at a rock band, she switched to dance and pop. After achieving some success with a few dance singles, she began work on her debut album, Madonna, which was released in 1983. The album yielded hits “Holiday,” “Borderline” and “Lucky Star” and set the stage for her groundbreaking Like a Virgin album.
Ambition is the debut script for Hollander, who worked as an assistant to Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, while he made Birdman, and Fresh Off the Boat co-executive producer Kourtney Kang. She is repped by WME, Bellevue, Ryan Pastorek and Robby Koch of Hansen Jacobson.
De Luca is coming off of producing this year’s Academy Awards and will produce next year’s as well. Ratner’s RatPac recently announced a partnership with Len Blavatnik’s Access Entertainment.
Executive vp of production Erik Baiers and director of development Chloe Yellin will oversee production for Universal. Lucy Kitada will help oversee for De Luca Productions.
Geena Davis was not aware she was making screen history as baseball standout Dottie Hinson in 1992’s A League of Their Own with co-stars Tom Hanks, Madonna, Lori Petty and Rosie O’Donnell.
When Hanks, as the gruff manager of the fictional team from the first professional all-women baseball league, called out to one of his despondent players, “There’s no crying in baseball,” it didn’t strike Davis as an immortal moment.
“We knew it was hella funny,” Davis, now 61, recalls. “But I didn’t know that was going to be a classic. That line is a signature, right up there with ‘Hasta la vista, baby.’”
League has earned its place as one of America’s best sports comedies, selected for preservation in the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress in 2012.
As the film celebrates its 25th anniversary on July 1 (with a new special edition Blu-ray out now), Davis recounts her memories from the League set.
Her audition was simple: Director Penny Marshall insisted League actors truly play ball. Davis’ audition consisted of demonstrating her baseball prowess in Marshall’s backyard.
“(Marshall) wanted to make sure I could throw a ball, so that happened,” says Davis. “I threw the ball to her, competently got it to her, she caught it and said, ‘Okay.’ That was the whole audition.”
Without an athletic upbringing, Davis trained intensively to flesh out her game and ultimately impressed the real baseball coaches onset.
“When the coaches would say, ‘You have real untapped athletic ability’ it was like, ‘Oh my God, I am coordinated.’ It just took me (until I was) 36 to find that out.” (She would go on to compete at the U.S. Olympic Trials in archery in 1999, two years after taking up the sport.)
Davis excelled at batting and that stare. “I wanted people to say ‘Uh-oh’ when I came to bat.”
Pitches were hard, balls were soft: Special precautions were required for close-up batting shots. Sponge-filled balls were used — not for the batters, but the crew.
“You’re actually hitting in the direction of the camera crew,” says Davis. “For close-ups, those balls were squishy. They looked like real baseballs, but they were all spongy inside so we wouldn’t clock anyone.”
Davis did the on-camera split: As catcher, Hinson pulls an acrobatic split when catching a foul ball, which Davis performed.
“Penny asked if I could do a split. I said to put it later in the shooting schedule to give me time to work up to it. It’s hard to learn that quickly. But I did,” says Davis.
She soaked in a hot tub to loosen up before the scene and nailed the split.
“The thing I did not do was get up from it. My character does a Chuck Berry split and then hops right back up,” says Davis. “There was no popping up happening. I was stuck there and had to be helped up.”
Madonna was a question mark: Davis admits she wasn’t sure what it would be like to work with Madonna, then in her prime.
“She was Madonna. We wondered if we were going to be able to talk to her. Was she going to have an entourage? Were they going to put up walls around her where she stands?” Davis recalls.
Ultimately, Madonna was a team player who trained hard and insisted on sliding head-first into bases. “That was painful. But she was so game. She was a trooper,’ says Davis.
Source : UsaToday
In the picture, a young Mazar peers at the camera as Haring, more clearly in focus, looks on behind her.
Mazar shared the photo on her own account immediately. “I was like, ‘Aw, Keith,’ ” she told Vanity Fair on a phone call Friday. “I think of Keith all the time, because his work is so present, and being much a part of what is so present and current in today’s climate—in terms of equality, immigration, sexuality, so many things.”
As she looks more at the photo, though, Mazar said she also thinks of the weekend in 1985 that it was taken, which happened to be the weekend of her friend Madonna’s wedding to Sean Penn in Los Angeles. Those few days marked Mazar’s first-ever trip to L.A.—and a memorable one, at that.
“We kind of had a whole weekend planned, where the wedding was one day, and another day we went to restaurants and different activities, she said. “That particular day, we went to Mr. Chow’s,” she said, recalling the site of the photo with Haring.
That stop at Mr. Chow’s was only one highlight of the weekend. The wedding itself was Mazar’s first experience with a high-profile event of that magnitude. As she and her friend Lance Loud tore down the Pacific Coast Highway on their way to the ceremony, Mazar said she marveled at the beauty before her. It wasn’t long, though, before she noticed the buzzing of helicopters overhead, making a beeline toward Madonna and Penn’s wedding: “I thought the helicopters were chasing us, even though they weren’t,” Mazar recalled, chuckling.
When she and Loud arrived at the wedding, Mazar quickly learned that she had not been given a plus-one. Mazar had to leave her friend to enter the nuptials—which boasted a guest list that included Cher—alone. Her entrance to the ceremony was less than graceful:
“My poor friend dropped me off in Malibu, at Johnny Carson’s house, and I teetered on down the driveway—alone—and I got to the wedding, and my heel got caught into, like, the wood deck, and I basically tripped into the wedding,” she said.
After the wedding, at which Mazar said she could hardly hear a thing with the helicopters roaring overhead, she got into a limousine with a host of her artist friends: Haring, Martin Burgoyne, Andy Warhol, and Steve Rubell. Then, to top off the eventful day, Rubell vomited all over Mazar’s brand new pair of Manolo Blahniks. Mazar, who was making her money as a makeup artist at the time, said they were the first pair of shoes she had ever bought with her own money—which was scarce.
“I basically probably had my electricity turned off just to buy these shoes, and Rubell vomited on them,” she said.
The memory of that weekend was one of many in Mazar’s friendship with Haring, who died of AIDs at the age of 31 in February of 1990. She told Vanity Fair that she’d known Haring even before she met Madonna, the two having come up together in New York City.