The official confirmation of Madonna's wedding to Guy Ritchie finally came this morning, 12 hours after the 42-year-old pop superstar wed the 32-year-old British film director at a fairytale Scottish castle in the celebrity wedding of the year. Church of Scotland minister Susan Brown, who officiated at the wedding, confirmed that Madonna is now, as Guy refers to her, "The Missus.
"It did happen," Rev. Brown told reporters outside her home in this sleepy Scottish town of Dornoch.
The delay in the official wedding announcement provided enough time for the newlyweds to make their escape to parts unknown. Rumors have the pair staying in the Scottish Highlands for their honeymoon, with a New Year's Eve stop in Edinburgh.
Brown would not divulge any more details of the star-studded Ritchie nuptials.
Top Security Madonna's choice of Skibo Castle for her second wedding was not merely based on its romance and luxury; the secluded, century-old castle afforded top security that effectively cut off the frantic media from intruding on the couple's privacy.
Three security teams with thermal heat-seeking equipment prowled the pine forests around Skibo in search of intruders, Reuters reports.
The day before, as 4-month-old Rocco was christened at Dornoch Cathedral, a man who was loitering suspiciously in the building was apprehended and arrested. Another man was arrested in Dornoch in the early hours of Friday morning, the BBC reports, although the charges have not been made public.
Cut off from entering the grounds of Skibo, a group of more than 200 frustrated journalists camped out at the castle's wrought-iron gates. By dawn, their number had dwindled to a mere handful, Reuters reports. The bride and groom had successfully escaped media scrutiny on their wedding day, and the paparazzi had to be content with photographing the A-list celebs as they arrived at Skibo.
Star-Studded Guest List In attendance at the pre-Christmas ceremony were some of the biggest names in Hollywood and the music world, including pop star Sting and his wife, Trudie Styler, who first introduced Madonna to her future husband at their country home two years ago. Sting had a small role in Ritchie's first film, Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels. The former Police frontman arrived in a kilt and is believed to be among the pop star guests who sang for those in attendance.
As rumored, Oscar-winner Gwyneth Paltrow, reportsly the chief bridesmaid, was a guest, as were actor Rupert Everett and designer Stella McCartney, who is said to have designed the wedding gown for her famous friend.
Spotted arriving at Inverness Airport were rock stars Jon Bon Jovi and Bryan Adams, while designer Donatella Versace arrived at nearby Wick airport, the BBC reports.
Rumored guests include George Clooney, Robin Williams, and newlyweds Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston, who created their own media frenzy with their July wedding in Malibu, Calif. Pitt co-stars in Ritchie's new film, Snatch.
Elton John, earlier believed to be singing "Song for Guy" at the ceremony in honor of the groom, did sing a song of sorts for Guy, but not at the wedding. Friday night found the singer, who performed at Princess Diana's funeral, singing a rude song about Ritchie on a London television program, according to The Associated Press.
Locals Glad It's Over After a week of media frenzy, the locals are now hoping that life will return to normal for the tiny Scottish town.
"It's only two days until Christmas, and we need to get things into perspective," Paul Hart, owner of the Eagle Hotel told the AP. "The short-term effect of all of this has given a welcome boost to local businesses, but it is the long-term effect which is important."
"Now that the wedding has been confirmed, life will get back to normal straight away when all the press leave," Gary Kerr, 16, told the AP. "It's been great, especially the christening, but it's a shame we did not get to see the wedding."