Rihanna - Rihanna Video Director Calls Out Man Down Criticism
The director of Rihanna's controversial new Man Down music video has confirmed the singer deliberately set out to hit headlines to "shine a light on the very dark subject matter".
Anthony Mandler teamed up with the pop star to make the hard-hitting promo for Man Down, in which the Umbrella star shoots a stranger at a railway station. A series of flashback images then show her grappling with the man outside a nightclub as he tries to attack her.
Rihanna has defended the footage, insisting she just wanted to warn young fans about the dangers of the "real world", and director Mandler has now backed her up, branding the headline-hitting criticism simply a "knee-jerk" reaction.
The filmmaker is also convinced today's artists need to stop playing safe with their music videos and push the boundaries in the way Madonna did in the 1980s.
He tells the Hollywood Reporter, "It's (the video) doing exactly what Rihanna and I hoped it would do, which is shine a light on the very dark subject matter... This medium used to be a great medium of messages... I grew up in the era of Madonna releasing videos and sparking controversy. I think most people are wasting this medium...
"The fact that there's an argument to ban this because this will make girls retaliate from abuse with murder is skipping over the point. We obviously have a huge issue to deal with as a country."