In this vintage 1987 profile, the Material Girl spills on her marriage to Sean Penn and the road to Hollywood stardom.

An icon of unabashed ambition and sexual magnetism, Madonna has been making headlines since the early MTV Age for her musical talents and much more. Cosmo caught up with the Material Girl in July 1987 to talk about her rising hopes for a career in Hollywood and her then-marriage to bad boy heartthrob Sean Penn. Endearingly frank and forever flirting with the wild side, some things never change: 35 years later, she remains the star we fell for then.

Madonna stands in the lobby of one of New York’s fancy East Side hotels. She is a study in black: black jacket, black skirt, black mod. “I’m here less than 24 hours,” she wails, “and I go running in the park, and when I get back to my room, my jewelry’s gone!”

She seems smaller in person than she looks on film or tape. The skin is porcelain, the eyes as blue as the sapphires that glittered on her stolen bracelet. “Sean just bought that bracelet for me,” she says, and sighs. “They took my engagement ring at the last hotel I was at.”

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