Madonna celebrates as banned Pepsi commercial finally airs 34 years later

Madonna has thanked Pepsi for finally airing a commercial that was banned more than three decades ago.

Back in 1989, Pepsi signed a $5 million (£4 million) deal with the pop star, which would see her song Like A Prayer used in a TV advertisement for the brand.

However, the day after its debut, the song’s official music video was released, sparking mass outrage, particularly from Christian organisations, including the Vatican.

Soon after Pepsi pulled the commercial.

But now, to mark the company’s 125th anniversary, it has now resurrected the advertisement, which was aired again at the MTV Video Music Awards on Tuesday night.

The Queen of Pop, 65, also shared her thoughts on the fact that the once-controversial clip was seeing the light of day again.

Posting the clip on social media, she wrote: ‘34 years ago I made a commercial with Pepsi to celebrate the release of my song Like a Prayer.

‘The commercial was immediately cancelled when I refused to change any scenes in the video where I was kissing a black saint or burning crosses.

‘So began my illustrious career as an artist refusing to compromise my artistic integrity.’

She added: ‘Thank you Pepsi for finally realising the genius of our collaboration. Artists are here to disturb the peace.’

First airing at the 31st Annual Grammy Awards in February 1989, Pepsi’s and Madonna’s commercial showed her returning to her childhood and enjoying a can of the drink as she watched her younger self celebrate her birthday.

Meanwhile the music video for Like A Prayer showed the singer dancing in lingerie alongside imagery deemed blasphemous by many Christians, including Catholic symbols such as the stigmata, saint prayer cards and crosses.

At the time Pope John Paul II condemned Madonna for using the religious imagery alongside sexual visuals.

The re-release of the ad comes as Madonna is also gearing up for her 40th anniversary Celebration tour, which had to be postponed after she was rushed to hospital after being found unresponsive earlier this year.

She is said to have restarted rehearsals two weeks ago, with an insider telling The Mirror she was taking things ‘at a slower pace’.

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