Madonna Distances Herself From M.I.A.

Madonna had promised a drama-free Super Bowl halftime performance a week ago, so it was assumed that she had no advance knowledge of, let alone approved, M.I.A. extending her middle finger to the crowd while accompanying the headliner on the single “Give Me All Your Luvin.’”

She made it official on Friday during an interview on Ryan Seacrest’s radio show. Madonna told Seacrest that she didn’t realize what M.I.A. had done until after the performance was over and she was in the process of heading out of Indianapolis.

“I wasn’t happy about it. I understand it’s kind of punk rock and everything, but to me there was such a feeling of love and good energy, and positivity … it seemed negative,” she said. “It's one of those things, it's such a teenager, kind of irrelevant thing to do in one respect. There was such a feeling of love and positivity there, what was the point? It was just out of place.”

Despite the controversy, she expressed pleasure with how the overall performance went, despite her nervousness about “walking into the holy grail of American sports.” She said her highlight was the “Like a Prayer” finale: “It was very emotional to me, I almost started crying … to see an entire stadium lit up like candles.”