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Madonna's first and second marriages didn't end so great.

But the pop superstar turned film director has clearly let bygones be bygones with Sean Penn and Guy Ritchie.

Promoting her film W.E. (her second effort as a film director) at the Venice Film Festival, Madonna, 53, graciously acknowledged her famous exes. "I am and was attracted to very creative people which is why I married Sean Penn and Guy Ritchie, two very talented directors," the singer said at a press conference last week.

"They both encouraged me as a director and as a creative person to do what I did, and they were both very supportive."

Back in 1989, Madonna divorced Penn, now 51, after just 4 years of marriage. She and Ritchie, now 42, divorced in 2008 after eight years together; they share a son, 11-year-old Rocco. These days, she keeps company with boyfriend Brahim Zaibat, a 24 year-old French breakdancer.

For now, it remains to be seen whether her inspiring exes have helped Madonna pull off a cinematic achievement with W.E.. The historical flick, about the shocking real-life romance of King Edward VIII, who abdicated the throne to be with American divorcée Wallis Simpson, is getting scathing reviews from critics so far.

The music legend also confirmed plans to release a new studio album -- her follow-up to 2008's Hard Candy -- in early 2012.