Who Is Madonna's Boyfriend, Brahim Zaibat?
From Sean Penn and Vanilla Ice to Dennis Rodman and Guy Ritchie, Madonna's relationship history is almost as eclectic as her career.
Though the Material Girl, 52, has been linked to a few Hollywood greats, she's lately been known for having younger tastes. Her last boyfriend, Brazilian-born DJ Jesus Luz, was merely 23 when they briefly dated, which must have had a lasting effect on the singing legend. In October rumors started flying that she was seeing 24-year-old French backup dancer Brahim Zaibat, whom she met when he performed a solo act to "Material Girl" at her clothing line launch party in September 2010.
Since then, the two have been seen together in public a handful of times, including once when they were photographed dancing and kissing at a busy club. Zaibat broke his silence soon afterward, assuring that neither he nor his superstar girlfriend had intended to go public. "It wasn't her deliberate decision and it wasn't mine," he told France's Grazia magazine. "It was because it was Madonna that the affair took on massive proportions. Nothing was calculated by us. We had a nice night together without thinking that there might be paparazzi there."
Admitting that things went "very fast" between the lovebirds, Zaibat went on to share that he was less than enthusiastic about all the hype. "I've stayed the same. It's others who have changed. People I haven't seen for seven years have suddenly remembered that I exist. It's become unmanageable. So I've changed my mobile number."
Age isn't the only gap between Madonna and Zaibat. The Lyon native, who has an "obsession" with dancing that he credits with bringing him closer to Madonna, is a devout Muslim, which could spell trouble for his Kabbalah-practicing gal pal. And Zaibat shouldn't look for support from his parents, either.
Patricia Vidal, his 44-year old divorced mother, has publicly disapproved of the union, noting that her son's new girlfriend is eight years her senior. Vidal told UK's Daily Mail, "I certainly wouldn’t say we’re overjoyed by Brahim’s relationship with a non-Muslim, and the fact that she’s Madonna doesn’t make things any easier."
Zaibat has no interest in raising too much controversy, however. He told Grazia, "I just want to get on with my life – for everything to be normal." —KIMBERLY STEELE