A Madonna biopic about her formative years in music has been green-lit by Universal studios.

It's called Blonde Ambition and is written by rising star screenwriter Elyse Hollander, and is said to focus on Madonna’s pre-stardom years in New York City.

The film’s script topped last year’s Black List - an annual ranking of Hollywood’s best unproduced screenplays - but Variety reports that the film has now been picked up by Universal Pictures.

Brett Ratner, who directed the singer's Beautiful Stranger video in 1999, is named amongst the producers for the film.

Legend has it that back in 1978, Madonna flew to New York from her hometown of Detroit with just $37 in her pocket.

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She told a taxi driver to take her to "the centre of everything", and he duly dropped her off in Times Square, which would've been a seedy and dangerous place back then, and far from the tourist trap it is today.

Over the next five years, Madonna worked as a model, dancer and waitress while playing in bands such as Emmy and Breakfast Club. She later decided to become a solo artist and regularly hung out at iconic nightclub Danceteria.

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In 1983, she broke through with her eponymous debut album, which included her breakthrough hits Holiday, Borderline and Lucky Star.

With sales of more than 300 million records, Madonna is recognised as the best-selling female recording artist of all time by Guinness World Records.

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