Three months ago, a 25-year-old Seattle resident with no acting experience received the notification of a lifetime: @badgirlriri started following you.
A few days later, the pop star tapped Sanam for her racy BBHMM music video. It’s a modern day Cinderella story that has the internet going bananas (likely out of a potent mix of awe and jealousy).
Rihanna found her muse via this selfie on the Instagram explore page. RiRi sent over a DM saying that she is “so fucking rare.” Shortly after a producer reached out to Sanam, asking if she would like to be in the music video.
“For the first few days, I had a general idea of what was going to happen. We’re going to be kidnapping this person and you guys are going to be her henchmen and you just have to be really tough. I think the term they used was ‘bad bitch.’ When they told me more about the video, I was like, Holy shit. Knowing Rih, I knew this shit was going to be super controversial,” she says.
Controversial indeed. The video has critics divided, some (like concerned mother Sarah Vine) saying that the video glamorizes torture, drugs and negative racial stereotypes, while others (like model Rachel Roberts, who stars in the video as the victim) say that it has a feminist message about badass bitches taking shit into their own hands. I say it’s just a music video, so chill the fuck out.
If Sanam’s story isn’t a plug for the value of selfies, I don’t know what is.