Today in Madonna History: May 17, 1991

On May 17 1991, Madonna: Truth Or Dare was released in 538 U.S. movie theatres.

Madonna: Truth or Dare chronicled the life of Madonna during her 1990 Blond Ambition World Tour.  The film was well received by critics and was successful at the box office, at that point becoming the highest-grossing documentary of all time with a worldwide gross of $29,012,935.

Outside of North America, where the game that inspired the documentary’s title was not well known at the time, the film was marketed under the title In Bed with Madonna – despite protests from Madonna herself who found the alternate title unoriginal.

A Blu-Ray edition of the documentary was recently announced for the UK market and interestingly it uses the film’s original, Madonna-approved title, Madonna: Truth or DareIf the release pans out as announced, it will be the first domestic UK release of the film to use this title.

Today in Madonna History: April 21, 1991

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On April 21 1991, Madonna participated in the 3rd annual AIDS Dance-A-Thon at the Sports Arena in Los Angeles, California.

Today in Madonna History: April 20, 1991

On April 20 1991, Rescue Me peaked at #3 on the UK Singles Chart after making its debut at #4 the previous week. It slid to #5 in its third week before falling out of the Top 10.

Rescue Me was the third single release from The Immaculate Collection in the UK, where it was issued in between re-releases of Crazy For You and Holiday.

Because the photo on international pressings of Rescue Me had already graced the cover of the Crazy For You reissue, Warner UK chose to market the single using an alternate shot taken from Jean-Baptiste Mondino’s June 1990 spread in Harper’s Bazaar. Ironically, the international Rescue Me cover photo was snapped on the set of the Mondino-directed music video for Justify My Love, although not by Mondino himself. It was instead photographed by another (future) Madonna music video director, Stephane Sednaoui.

Today in Madonna History: February 27, 1991

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On February 27 1991, Madonna’s first greatest hits video collection, The Immaculate Collection video was certified double platinum (for sales of 200,000 units).

Stephen Thomas Erlewine (AllMusic) had this to say about the video collection:

If any artist exploited MTV and music video to its full extent, it was Madonna. Duran Duran may have been the first video stars, but Madonna was savvy enough to redefine her image with each video, not just each album. All of her major videos between 1983 and 1990 (with the exception of her first, Burning Up, and Justify My Love, which was one of the new tracks on the greatest-hits The Immaculate Collection) are included on the video edition of Immaculate. Images from the videos — the gondolas of Like a Virgin, the Marilyn Monroe homage of Material Girl, the faux-Blade Runner Express Yourself, the taboo-shattering Like a Prayer, the sleek, stylish Vogue — have not only become part of pop music history, but of pop culture, and that becomes apparent after watching this collection. It’s truly astounding to watch the videos back to back, as it confirms that Madonna always knew where she was going, visually and musically. The singles were benchmarks of pop music in the ’80s, and if anything, the videos are even more important. This is what mainstream pop was all about in the ’80s.

Today in Madonna History: February 22, 1991

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On February 22 1991, Madonna’s controversial Justify My Love music video single was certified 8x platinum for shipment of 400,000 units in the USA.

Despite MTV and other similar video channels around the world banning the Justify My Love music video, the financial advantages of the ban were not lost on Madonna:

“It may seem like it was a publicity stunt, and I was very lucky, I must say. But I did not plan on selling this video. The controversy just happened. It wasn’t planned. So lucky me.”

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Today in Madonna History: January 19, 1991

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On January 19 1991, Madonna’s The Immaculate Collection video collection hit #1 on the Top Music Videos chart in the USA.  The VHS video single for Justify My Love hit #2 on the same chart.

Today in Madonna History: January 18, 1991

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On January 18 1991, Madonna’s The Immaculate Collection was certified double platinum for sales of 2 million units in the USA.

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