Rihanna’s ‘Rude Boy’ Video Director Responds to Criticism


You can’t silence the Internet. After premiering her video for “Rude Boy,” Rihanna came under attack by outspoken viewers who immediately drew comparisons to M.I.A.’s “Boyz” clip. Director Melina Matsoukas has responded to the criticism.

The woman behind RiRi’s “Rude Boy” and “Hard” videos was disappointed to hear the backlash to her latest work, which was influenced by Rasta culture and Atari, but insists she wasn’t trying to copy anyone. “Afterward I was like, ‘Oh, this sucks. They tore down my video,’” Melina told MTV News. “And [M.I.A.'s] video’s great too. It definitely wasn’t trying to rip anybody off at all—it was just our approach and the animation stuff, it had a similar vibe.”

Her inspiration came from pop culture icons and not one source in particular. “We’ve seen that before with Grace Jones and Andy Warhol, so I don’t know if anybody can lay claim to anything,” she added. “We’re all inspired by similar elements and it came together in that way.”

Melina will keep her name in the spotlight with the video for Alicia Keys and Beyoncé’s “Put It in a Love Song.” The clip was filmed in Brazil and is set to debut in the coming weeks.

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  1. Joyams

    Haters again… That’s fuckin lame to always compare everything.


  2. The Truth

    STEUPS!!! She shouldn’t even respond to the nonsense. Since when did M.I.A. invent that effect? M.I.A. has been ripping off Caribbean themes since she came out with that ridiculous accent. Forget what these chickens on the internet are buzzing about.


  3. Weezy

    I think every video Melina does, is about turning a girl into a slutty/sexy chick and adding a hole bunch of color. Examples?

    Ashanti – Good Good
    Beyonce – Get Me Bodied
    Beyonce – Freakum Dress
    Eve – Tambourine
    Rihanna – Hard
    Rihanna Rude boy


  4. XR2

    ^ familiarize yourself with MIA before making those comments. MIA’s style is not caribbean.

    and MIA hasn’t thrown any punches at riri so stop attacking her.


  5. khfjyf

    i still think it look like Solange Video but whateva who gives a fuk! the vid made me like the song cus i hated it when i 1st herd it. riri keep doin that lil stink ass wine cus it works for u it was cute ; ) #BEYONCERULES


  6. joey

    lmao i love how ppl make it into a m.i.a. vs rihanna thing. obviously melina is very talented and has great visions. just becaue rihannas video has alot of color and clever camera effects, doesnt mean its a copy of boys. for me i thought it looked more like m.i.a.’s galang. but who cars. all videos look alike. chill ppl who gives a fuck.


  7. kRYstal

    lol @ ya’ll saying you don’t care but still making comments.


  8. Lisa

    I really don’t know why this became a huge topic, when George Clinton and reggae artists have been doing videos like this since at least the 80′s.


  9. M!ke

    Rihanna’s Video is better than MIAs video first off. . . I think the video reminds me more of Solange I Decided video but its still different. maybe MIA is jus tryna get some shine out of this her video aint nothing special it looks cheap to me


  10. Terrell Johnson

    “Rude Boy” is better than M.I.A.’s video.


  11. Candy

    ^^ how is she trying to get shine? she hasn’t even said anything!! what a ridiculous statement to make.


  12. Kevin

    I don’t know get why people are really hung up on this. Like if anything the video’s could be cousin’s but damn, I was expecting some real copying. I get the feeling that if anybody wanted to go for an neon pop-art afro-centric vibe they’d do the same.


  13. Galang

    Rihanna “Rude Boy” video is a joke. Theres nothing artistic about it. M.I.A. “Boyz” & “Galang” is more authentic and more artistic. Rihanna is known for being a big swagger jacker. Her fans needs to shut up and stop trying to cover up for her. Shes a gimmick and its good to see this horrible video get a backlash for copying M.I.A.’s past music videos.


  14. Nicky






  15. g3

    Rihanna’s video is better than M.I.A and Solange’s and the song is better so whats the problem get over it Melina directed those videos and she choose to give Rudeboy a similar treatment compared to Rih they’re both nothing just two flops i dont see why this issue is still being brought up what do they want her to do remake the video?? i think not Melina is a very creative director she knows how to bring out the best in female videos like she did for Ciara’s “Go Girl” which was a hot ass video then she did Beyonce’s “Diva” which everyone was saying is a knock-off of Go Girl there’s gonna be comparisons no matter what build a bridge n get over it!


  16. Tyler

    @g3, Melina did not direct MIA’s video. Get your facts straight.


  17. ybg

    Melina directed m.i.a boys


  18. Nabi

    I love it)))


  19. Barbz



  20. Nate

    No, Melina did not direct M.I.A.’s video! I don’t know where everyone is getting this info, but a quick visit to Wikipedia will prove you wrong.

    And @ Weezy, Melina does not just do colorful videos. She has also done many black and white, more subtle videos like Beyonce’s “Diva.”

    In conclusion, there’s nothing new under the sun. There are tons of ideas that are just being passed around from one artist to another. The video is a little bit similar to “Boyz,” but it also has influences from Grace Jones, Keith Harring, Andy Warhol, and Jean-Michael Basquiat… and it’s okay! It’s okay to borrow ideas. It’s not the director’s fault if the public is not informed.


  21. A.F.G.

    like it !


  22. Galang

    F@g shut up. U know nothing.


  23. kick

    rihanna ripped just about anyone in music industry; so not original either way you look at it.


  24. Mrs. Darren shellychelle Sharper

    I don’t care for Rihanna, she seems like def jam’s prop to me. No originality whatsoever. I’m more interested in Aicia Keys’s video with Beyonce. When that comes out, holla at me!


  25. Timmy

    I’m sure M.I.A. does not give a sh*t whether Melina or Rihanna think her video is good or not. Everyone from Lady Gaga, Fergie, Solange, Santigold to Rihanna should get their heads out M.I.A.’s ass and get original.


  26. MaZ

    Melina made a great job!
    You can’t compare both videos just because they use graphic procedures, you have to look further. The vibe ain’t the same as inspiration. MIA’s Boyz and Rihanna’s Rude Boy are unique in their own way.


  27. вeяячℓiσuѕ вeα

    who cares the video rude boy is good


  28. Me

    Melina needs to get a grip. She’s good but repetitve and not as innovative as she use to be


  29. Rudeboy now #9 on Itunes

    The effects arent even the same in the Rudeboy video so wtf yall talkin about. Rap-up im glad yall posted the boyz video up so ppl can actually see the huge difference. Rihanna wins, this is the most talked about video of her career. Oh and to u haters Rudeboy is now 23 on Billboard hot 100, it moved over 30 places from 65. U know how big that is. Its the biggest gain on the Billboard charts right now. By next week Rudeboy will be another top 10 for rihanna. Amazing!!!


  30. Revenge Is Sweet

    Omg Rihannas Rudeboy is 23 on Billboard hot 100 and last week it was 65. Thats a huge huge jump i cant even believe it. And on itunes now its #9. Lets get it to number one yall that is simply incredible. Rihanna Reign just wont let up.


  31. Rated R

    This video has been a huge success. Its the reason why rudeboy is doing so good on the charts right now so to u haters im sorry to tell u but this has been the most talked about video of Rihannas career. Def Jam is gonna release like 3 more singles and videos from the Rated R album i cant wait. Rihanna is dominating right now!!!!


  32. MushyLove_1992

    Who cares? It wasn’t a video. It was a fashion show, just like all the other Rihanna videos. Moving along…


  33. Nicky




  34. bonka

    i love how rihanna stans are quick to jump out and defend rihanna when someone says she’s ripping off other’s work, but when someone ELSE is being accused ripping off rihanna, you all attack that one person and call them unoriginal biters. the cherry picking, it’s ridiculous.


  35. Ari

    THey both look like Nenah Cherry’s video from the 80s…soooo…they are both ripoffs


  36. LadySheamus

    The first comment said it all.


  37. yeahright

    I wouldn’t have said shyt about it. The only one’s making noise bout that ish is 14 years olds naive enough to think either of them have done something that hasn’t been done before.


  38. kekeluvsu

    The video was good. Like it or not. Some videos have some similarities. I still like the video. It’s one of Rih=Rih’s best IMO


  39. lol

    Dont forget about
    love sex magic -ciara

    melina also directed that


  40. wizen up

    For crying out in a bucket…As much as i love her…M.I.A wasn’t an original either, its all borrowed from acts in the early 90′s, its about fashion and attitude and expression people!…90′s is in, therefore these video’s draw inspiration from that time, what’s particularly in, is afro chic, so naturally any good director that actually gets it, with an eye, dealing with youth culture will hook into similar influences.
    This is hip stuff.
    For all the uninformed look up bands from the late eighties early 90′s like e void or Via Afrika. These where bands that rocked afro chic edge back in the day in South Africa and they fuzed african styles with european trends at the time. The result was pretty much what can be seen in both these video’s.
    It’s the directors job to be on trend and explore it, especially the world of music video and where the director for M.i.A’s ‘boy” feel was to be more Lo-Fi versus slicker approach on “rude boy,’
    both get it.
    Its about how you put it together and both rock.
    Melina is a great director and her style is astute and relevant.

    respect from another director.


  41. Sam

    Even it it was ripped off, the Rihanna video is a much better video. Much more polished and engaging.


  42. eda

    amore rii


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