On October 12, rapper T.I. took to social media to share a video that has proven to be controversial. The snippet was designed as a promo for his new album and was pointed at the President and the First Lady of the United States.
Melanie Marden is the woman who portrays Melania Trump in the video. Marden bears a striking resemblance to Mrs. Trump, which made her the perfect star for T.I.’s video. She is now known on the internet as “Naked Melania,” a nickname that she seems to have given herself; she had added it to her Instagram bio, but removed it on Tuesday.
Marden is a model, actress, and producer. She was born and raised in Canada, but currently lives in Los Angeles.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Video Was a Promo for T.I.’s Album ‘Dime Trap’
T.I.’s video was uploaded as a promo for his latest album, Dime Trap, which was released on October 5. It is a clear response to Kanye West’s White House visit, as evidenced by the caption.
“Dear 45. I ain’t Kanye,” T.I. wrote.
The promo video features some footage of the POTUS before turning into T.I. taking over the Oval Office. It starts off by showing President Trump walking to Marine One. After a few seconds, T.I. is seen smoking a cigar in the Oval Office. “Melania” (Melania Marden) then walks in wearing her “I Really Don’t Care” jacket, before stripping down to nothing.
You can watch the video below. Caution: It may be considered NSFW.
2. Melania Trump’s Rep Has Responded to the Video
Days after the video was posted on social media, Melania Trump’s rep, Stephanie Grisham, responded to it, releasing the following statement:
“Like it or not, she is the First Lady and this is the White House. It’s disrespectful and disgusting to portray her this way simply because of politics. These kinds of vulgar attacks only further the divisiveness and bias in our country – it needs to stop,” Grisham said, according to TMZ.
Grisham has also called for a boycott of T.I.
3. Marden Has Taken Some Serious Heat for Her Appearance in the Video
Marden has received plenty of feedback following her “Naked Melania” feature. In fact, she took to social media to post a message to her “haters.”
“Wow, I don’t usually post about haters but I need to, wow!!! This weekend I experienced this with my latest post of TI’s new teaser of his music video – where I was hired (as an actress) not a stripper to portray Melania Trump. It was a creative choice for me, and also an opportunity to empower women. I stand firmly in my decision to share all of myself in this role. I wanted to be brave, be fearless and for the first time in my life do a role that required nudity. The body is nothing to be ashamed of. In this time where women are finally speaking up about being victimized, I felt good about being a strong enough woman to portray a nude First Lady. It was a hard decision for me but I’m proud of myself for being so brave. I send love to all the people who called me names and made accusations or delivered hurtful insults. These are clearly deep wounds inside of you. That [has] nothing to do with me. For that, I am sad and wish you much healing. To all the political people threatening me, I remind you this is a music video ~ Relax,” she wrote.
4. She Is a Model, Actress & Producer
Marden was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. When she was a teenager, she was heavily involved in gymnastics. It was during a television interview that she “caught the eye of a talent scout” who signed her to a modeling agency, thus kicking off her career, according to her website.
These days, Marden works as a model, actress, and producer. She is known for her work in Timeless, a film that she produced in honor of her late mother. The film was a passion project that raised awareness of brain cancer.
Additionally, Marden starred in films like Mutant X and Pigs.
According to her IMDb page, Marden recently finished filming Red to Black, a drama-horror directed by Romane Simon.
Even still, Maden isn’t super well known. Although she is very active on social media, she only has 13,500 followers on Instagram.
She is also the founder of a beauty and wellness concierge company called HMMSpa.
5. She Is Divorced
Marden was previously married to Craig Fury. Not too much is known about their relationship, but Fury is a veteran, according to a 2010 tweet from Marden.
Back in 2014, Marden was on Bravo’s Friends to Lovers, a show in which people date their best friends in hopes of finding love. At the time, Marden said that she was open to finding love again. She went on the show with her friend Greg Plitt.
Her current relationship status is unknown.