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Madonna Interview : Cosmopolitan

Monogamy: “It’s definitely ain effort. You certainly have to feel the other person is worth your monogamy. I demand it of my partner and practice it myself in a serious relationship. But if I find out he isn’t faithful, well… what’s good for the goose, you know.”

Jealousy: “Carlos [Carlos Leon, Madonna’s number one for over a year] is very jealous. I meant, when I’m looking through a magazine. I’m careful not to comment on attractive pictures of guys. I understand this. Men who are with me have to endure my image as well as the reality of people taking that image literally and throwing themselves at me. So I’m always reassuring my men. I say, ‘You’re the one. I’m here with you.’ Of course, he looks at other women all the time. So I’m often left to wonder, Why am I censoring myself for him?”

Romance: “I’m really much more a romantic than I am a hedonist, even though that’s how the world has come to see me. But I don’t regret having dealt with sexuality so often and so openly in my work. It’s like when everybody was saying I was a lesbian. I didn’t deny it for years because I thought, Well, so what if I was – what’s the problem with that? That’s my attitude about sexuality in general: ‘Have you got a problem with that?’ Unfortunately, s-e-x became my moniker, even though almost all of my songs are romantic. I don’t write shocking, explicit lyrics.” (No question, Madonna is the mistress of romantic balladry. Her Something to Remember album is drenched in aching paeans to love – love lost, unrequited, tortured. For all her brazen glamour, Madonna’s songwriting reveals the sensitive woman behind the misunderstood sex symbol.)

The Sex book: “Ah, back to that! I admit to one error there. I allowed the book to he designed hy somebody who did magazine layouts. And what looks great in a magazine doesn’t always translate as a book. The text – yes. there was text! – was difficult to read. It was supposed to be ironic. People didn’t get it. But if you’re waiting for me to say I regret doing it, you’ll be waiting a very long time.”

The media: “I don’t want to give the impression and I know I might sometimes that I’m completely against the press or that they’re completely against me. There are some terrific journalists who give me a fair shake, even when they don’t always get what I’m doing. But in an all-around sense. I’m learning just to have a better sense of humor when it comes to reading nonsense about myself.”

Her movie career: “I’ve been in four very successful films – Desperately Seeking Susan, Dick tracy, A League of Their Own, and Truth or Dare. I’ve also been in four or live stinkers – some of which weren’t my films at all, though they were promoted as such. Obviously, I haven’t hit my stride in movies, but let me say this: I’m not particularly interested in becoming a great big movie star. I am interested in becoming a good actress. If one comes with the other, that’s fine. But I don’t spend my life mourning my flops.”
So what about Four Rooms (her most recent cinema effort)? “I liked the idea and the script [four different directors, four separate stories, all taking place in a Hollywood hotel on New Year’s Eve]. I wanted to work with Allison Anders, who did the sequences I appear in. She has a great, almost childlike enthusiasm, which I appreciate. The role of a gay witch interested me; I thought it was funny, and I liked the ensemble aspect of the film itself.”
Did she have any qualms about playing a lesbian disciple of darkness? Madonna rolls her eyes: “I guess I’m not getting through here. No, of course not. It’s a part in a movie, not my life.”

Plastic surgery: “Well, I’ve certainly thought ahout it: In terms of when the time comes, will I do it? Because it has nothing to do with personal vanity and everything to do with professional longevity. You’re required to look a certain way. Period. It will depend entirely on where I am in my life, where my work is, what’s happening in my personal life. But if I ever do it. I want the guy who did Catherine Deneuve. My God, she looks incredible!”

Children: “I want them. I’ll have them. But not right now.”
[She’d later joke on Prime Time Live that maybe she’ll advertise for a stud to sire them!)

The Material Girl: “Well, I can’t completely disdain the song and video, because they certainly were important to my career. But talk about the media hanging on to a phrase and misinterpreting the damn thing as well. I didn’t write that song, you know, and the video was all about how the girl rejected diamonds and money. But God forbid irony should he understood. So when I’m ninety, I’ll still be the Material Girl. I guess it’s not so had. Lana Turner was the Sweater Girl until the day she died.”

That said. Madonna stands up. It’s been a long night, and she still hasn’t done her MTV stint. But I’ve got one minute left on the tape, and I want to fill it. “So, do you mean what you say on the Human Nature video – ‘Absolutely no regrets?'”
She heads toward the door, her back to me, and I think sho’ not going to answer. But as she opens the door, letting in the heat and noise, she turns and says. “People always want you to say you’re sorry or ‘Forgive me. I’ve made mistakes.’ Well, I’ll say this: Any mistakes I’ve made are war wounds I wear proudly because they’ve shaped me more than anything else. I can only hope that if I’m patient and diligent enough, if I continue to grow as an artist and a human being, people will come to realize that I’m not some callous, power-hungry, sex-crazed control freak who sings occasionally. They’ll see me for what I am. But just in case they never do, the people important to me, my friends and family, they know. They’ve always known, and that’s enough for me.”
Click! The recorder stops, Madonna looks down at the tiny machine in my hand, pointed – now uselessly at her Gucci shirtfront. She laughs and moves into the waiting arms of her entourage: “Out of tape, honey? Too bad. You never did ask me about orgasms!”

© Cosmopolitan