Today in Madonna History: June 15, 1994

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On June 15 1994, Dangerous Game was released on home video. The film was directed by Abel Ferrara, and starred Madonna, Harvey Keitel and James Russo.

In 2007, Ferrara recalled,

It was just another one of our films that never came out. But on that one, the audience didn’t really like the film. Madonna killed it. The first impression people get on a movie is the one that never gets out of their mind. So after Madonna got so trashed for doing Body of Evidence, she thought she was going to beat the critics to the punch and badmouth the film. And she actually got good reviews. She never got a good review from the Voice or The New York Times in her life, but she got good reviews for this movie, which she came out and trashed. I’ll never forgive her for it.

Did you watch this film? Did you like it? 

Today in Madonna History: May 28, 1994

On May 28 1994, I’ll Remember (Theme From The Motion Picture With Honors) peaked at #2 on Billboard’s Hot 100 Singles Sales chart (one week), Hot 100 Airplay chart (five weeks) and Top 40 Mainstream chart (three weeks).

This combined push allowed the single to reach its overall peak of #2 on the Hot 100 Singles chart.

Had the single’s slower growing success on the Hot AC chart (which would peak at #1 for four weeks beginning June 11th) aligned with its sales peak on May 28th, I’ll Remember might have advanced to the top spot on the Hot 100. Instead, a very respectable four-week run at #2 would have to do.

Today In Madonna History: March 21, 1994

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On March 21 1994,  Madonna’s I’ll Remember (Theme From With Honors) music video premiered on MTV.

The video was directed by Alek Keshishian. The androgynous portrayal of Madonna in the video, was appreciated critically for breaking gender barriers.

Today in Madonna History: March 15, 1994

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On March 15 1994, Madonna attended the 8th annual Soul Train Awards with Rosie Perez at the Shrine Auditorium, in Los Angeles, California.

Today in Madonna History: December 5, 1994

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On December 5 1994, Madonna began filming the music video for Bedtime Story at Universal Studios in Los Angeles, CA.

The video marked her second collaboration with director Mark Romanek and featured cinematography by Harris Savides. To assist in the process of developing her ideas for the video into something more tangible, Madonna again turned to storyboard artist Grant Shaffer, who had previously collaborated on her videos for Deeper And Deeper and Rain.

Madonna recalled the inspiration for the video in an interview with Aperture magazine:

“My Bedtime Story video was completely inspired by all the female surrealist painters like Leonora Carrington and Remedios Varo. There’s that one shot where my hands are up in the air and stars are spinning around me. And me flying through the hallway with my hair trailing behind me, the birds flying out of my open robe – all of those images were an homage to female surrealist painters; there’s a little bit of Frida Kahlo in there, too.”

The effects-laden video was shot over six days and has been noted by Madonna as being one of the more grueling video shoots of her career. Filming of a scene that featured Madonna bathing in blue-coloured water yielded unexpectedly colourful results; when Madonna emerged from the water, she later recounted, it quickly became apparent that her skin had been temporarily stained blue.

Fortunately any on-set difficulties were not evident in the final product. Following several months of post-production work, the video’s stunning surrealist imagery was enthusiastically received by viewers upon its release in March, 1995.

A very special thank you to artist Grant Shaffer for generously sharing a selection of his original storyboards used in the development of the Bedtime Story video! We’d like to invite readers to check out more of Grant’s art on his official website – including his sketches for Deeper And Deeper, Rain and Madonna’s Japanese Takara commercial.

Today in Madonna History: November 30, 1994

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On November 30 1994, Madonna’s second music video release from Bedtime Stories, Take A Bow, was released. The award winning music video (Best Female Video at the 1995 MTV Video Music Awards) was directed by Michael Haussman in Ronda and Antequera, Spain.

The bullfighter in the video was played by real-life Spanish bullfighter Emilio Muñoz. Muñoz reprised his role with Madonna in the You’ll See music video, also directed by Haussman in 1995.

Today in Madonna History: November 12, 1994

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On November 12 1994, Madonna’s Bedtime Stories was the week’s highest debut on the Billboard 200 album chart, peaking at #3 with sales of 145,000 units.

While the figure represented a 15% drop in first-week sales from her previous long player, Erotica, the album proved to be a commercial grower in America – where the runaway success of its second single, Take A Bow, would push its overall U.S. sales tally well beyond that of its predecessor.

Illustrating urban/r&b’s U.S. chart domination at the time, Bedtime Stories was held back from the top spot by the Murder Was The Case soundtrack (performed by Snoop Doggy Dogg) and Boyz II Men’s II.

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