|Madonna photographed by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott|
GUS VAN SANT: Hey, Madonna.
MADONNA: Gus, is that you?
VAN SANT: Yes. I'm at my house in L.A., just reading the paper.
MADONNA: Are you living in L.A. now?
VAN SANT: I still live in Portland [Oregon], but I have a place in L.A., and I'm starting to work on this film down here.
MADONNA: You're always working on a film.
VAN SANT: Usually.
MADONNA: But that's what you do.
VAN SANT: It's my habit. [laughs] I heard you're going to Africa.
MADONNA: Yeah. I go to Malawi twice a year. It's where two of my children were adopted from, and I have a lot of projects there that I go and check up on and children who I look after. It's sort of a commitment that I've made to this country and the hundreds of thousands of children there who have been orphaned by AIDS. I made a documentary about it [I Am Because We Are, 2008], and it's just become part of my life. I'm going to meet with Jeffrey Sachs [the economist]. I'm sure you've heard of him. He's starting a global education initiative, and I'm going to be his Girl Friday, so to speak. We're going to hold a press conference to talk about the school for girls that I'm building in Malawi. It's kind of our way of making sure that every kid has a chance to have an education-more specifically girls, but boys as well. Girls, though, in a lot of developing countries don't have the opportunity to go to school, nor are they encouraged to go to school, so what we're doing is the beginning of a dream. But I'm going to Malawi for lots of reasons.
(click here to read the full Madonna/Gus Van Zant interview on the Interview Magazine website)