Stand to attention, the shark trend has landed!
It’s not shark week quite yet, but the sea predators are definitely having a moment. First performing on stage at the Super Bowl half time show, dancing with Katy Perry, and now swimming with pop’s resident bad gal, Rihanna.
The ‘FourFiveSeconds’ singer has a reputation for being daring with fashion, whether she’s donning high-fashion pasties at the AmfAR Gala or strutting down the CFDAs red carpet in a custom-made Adam Selman see-through Swarovski dress. It’s no surprise then that she’d be able to pull off accessorizing with the cast of Jaws for the Harper’s Bazaar March 2015 cover—proving her fashion icon status yet again. (Seriously though, who else could make swimming with sharks in to a fashion statement?)
The shoot was produced by famed photographer Norman Jean Roy, and pays homage to both the 40th anniversary of Jaws, and Steven Spielberg himself. The 26-year-old Bajan beauty announced the news via her Instagram account and shared a sneak peek of her stunning cover shots with the playful hashtag “#yallmuhphuckazwouldabeenchewed”, in typical Rihanna fashion. Regular human being translation: ‘ya’ll would have been chewed’. And yes, we most likely would have.
While the subscriber cover was obviously created digitally, Harper’s Bazaar says the star did indeed frolic with the animals to get the rest of the shots last December. For any sceptics out there, the magazine even shared behind-the-scene footage of Rihanna taking a dive into the tank at the Florida Aquarium in Tampa amongst three live sand tiger sharks, none shorter than eight feet long.
It took a dozen dives and three outfit changes, which included Giuseppe Zanotti sandals and swimsuits by Burberry, Mugler and Gottex, to complete the killer shoot. RiRi channelled her inner disco diva with a bit of help from her BFF and Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing, who custom made the metallic gold wide-leg jumpsuit for her.
Her IDGAF attitude is exactly why we love her – showing off pierced nipples posing topless for French magazine Lui, and consequently getting temporarily kicked off Instagram, case in point! When she was also asked how she can eat pasta every day and still look the way she does, she breezily replied: ‘you mean how I got my cellulite?’
Rihanna’s a die-hard fan of Jaws, and said swimming with sharks was definitely on her bucket list. She told Harper’s: ‘it freaked me out because I was a beach baby, so every time a new Jaws came out I would take months off from the beach or just sit on the sand. If I happened to get in the water, my dad would hum the theme music, and I was right back out of it. But that was really my fault because I was obsessed with Jaws. Steven Spielberg was my childhood hero’.
But the inspiration for the shoot didn’t just come from the cult-classic picture; it turns out there’s a deeper, hugely elaborate metaphor in there too. ‘I try my best to avoid the sharks of life, but I have had my share of experiences with them, and in those cases I just have to handle them accordingly. But I do not swim with sharks … sharks swim with sharks’, she said. You see, she doesn’t stop at just posing with sharks, she also throws shades at them. She truly is #unapologetic.
It’s safe to say that the pop star, who just released the first single from her upcoming album, featuring Kanye West and Sir Paul McCartney, has definitely upped the ante for any stars out there who think striking a pose in designer clothes makes them badass. The Harper’s Bazaar issue hit shelves on February 17th.