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Is Madonna Headlining the Super Bowl Halftime Show?

Oct 4, 2011 at 10:41 AM Chime in now

Madonna

Oli Scarff/Getty Images

A report says that the Queen of Pop is primed to take the stage at the Feb. 5 football extravaganza -- but what does her rep say?
By DONNA KAUFMAN

Madonna named her most recent film W.E. -- but her new favorite letters may be NFL! According to the sports website SBNation, the Queen of Pop will perform during the Super Bowl XLVI halftime show in Indianapolis, Ind.

Though the NFL has not confirmed the report, the possibility is exciting for Madonna fans -- who have been waiting a long time for the singer to step up to the Super Bowl stage. In 1998, the year she released Ray of Light, Madonna was in negotiations to do the show in Miami, but the deal fell through. (Instead, several musicians joined together for a salute to Motown's 40th anniversary.) Then in 2010, Madonna was supposed to headline another halftime performance in Miami, but backed out and was replaced by The Who. ("I don't know who did what to anger her, but she is out," an insider told TV Guide at the time.)

Frankly, the fact that Madonna has already backed out of two previous halftime shows may not bode well for the 2012 Super Bowl. We wonder what the problem was. Could it be that the NFL tried to tone down her act to make it more "family friendly"? The Material Girl is no longer the scandalous young star of the '80s, but as late as 2006, she was being condemned by the Vatican for "crucifying" herself onstage during her concert tour. Or maybe they wanted Madonna to perform a "greatest hits" medley when she was more interested in doing new singles? Or perhaps they asked her to -- gasp! -- share the stage with another singer. Or did they simply make the mistake of sending her hydrangeas?

In truth, Madonna does fit the mold of recent halftime performers like Prince, The Rolling Stones, U2 and Paul McCartney: iconic musicians who are past their glory days, yet still going strong. (Even folks who were once scandalized by Madonna are probably getting nostalgic for her by now!) And with a new single dropping in early 2012, Madonna would be wise to sing it to the bleachers.

Don't get your hopes up yet, though: the singer's rep tells Entertainment Weekly that there's "nothing to confirm at this point," and the NFL won't comment. The big event -- which will happen with or without Madonna -- is scheduled for Feb. 5, 2012.

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