'Shake It Off' music video director shoots down racist claims, tells Earl Sweatshirt to be 'open-minded'

By Gina DiFalco,

Taylor Swift’s music video director for her first single off 1989, “Shake It Off,” is defending it against racist claims.

Mark Romanek spoke to Vulture about the controversy, particularly from rapper Earl Sweatshirt.

"We simply choose styles of dance that we thought would be popular and amusing and cast the best dancers that were presented to us without much regard to race or ethnicity,” said Romanek. "If Earl Sweatshirt was open-minded enough to take the four minutes to watch it, he might see what the larger, humanistic, and utterly color-blind message was intended to be."

He went on to call it a "massively inclusive piece," which is "very, very innocently and positively intentioned."

“And — let's remember — it's a satirical piece. It's playing with a whole range of music video tropes and cliches and stereotypes,” he added.

Sweatshirt claimed Swift’s video is “inherently offensive and ultimately harmful," although he admitted he didn’t watch it.

He claimed the video, which features Swift in a wide variety of looks, one of which sees her wearing gold hoops and cutoff shorts. She's also seen as a ballerina, a cheerleader and and an interpretive dancer.

"Perpetuating black stereotypes to the same demographic of white girls who hide their prejudice by proclaiming their love of the culture,” he wrote. “For instance, those of you who are afraid of black people but love that in 2014 it's ok for you to be trill or twerk or say n---a."

image via RogerWong/INFphoto.com

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