Kanye West‘s latest video is nothing short of jaw-dropping.
Featuring naked figures of Taylor Swift, Bill Cosby, Donald Trump, Rihanna, Caitlyn Jenner and George Bush, among others, “Famous” was screened to an arena full of fans on Friday night in Los Angeles. The rapper premiered the powerful clip — the sole single (so far) from his latest album, The Life of Pablo — at the L.A. Forum as an 8-minute short film art piece.
— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) June 25, 2016
Voyeuristic, provocative and surreal throughout, in it, West is seen laying in bed with his wife Kim Kardashian alongside Swift, Ray J, Chris Brown, Amber Rose, Rihanna, Caitlyn Jenner, Cosby, Anna Wintour, Trump and Bush — each flanking the other while seemingly asleep. All of the celebrities are entirely lifelike but synthetic bodies.
The scene is presumably post-coital and shot with a fuzzy grain to the video that gives an even more heightened sense of its sexuality. Each of the figures, whose commonality is individual infamy — some, like Swift, referenced in the lyrics to “Famous” (“I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex / Why? / I made that bitch famous” — appears to breath gently as the camera pans over faces and around intimate, starkly nude body parts.
On Saturday morning, West jokingly tweeted, “Can somebody sue me already,” with the hashtag #I’llwait. Brown, meanwhile, had a comical reaction to the “Famous” video. “Why I gotta have the plumbers butt/ crack showing WAX figure?” the singer wrote on Instagram. Swift’s representatives did not immediately respond to Billboard‘s request for comment.
At the Forum event, a four-minute interlude arrived before the final verse that stretched on uncomfortably for those shocked by a visual of Swift laying face up with her breasts exposed. Using the pop singer as the centerpiece of the clip was a controversial artistic decision for West considering the two’s public dust-ups in the past — most recently, about whether Swift did or didn’t approve of her shout-out in the song.
Equally unexpected was the appearance of Cosby, which triggered a surprised laugh from the crowd, who then instantly turned to look at West — watching from a balcony alongside Kardashian — for a reaction. It should be noted: West was grinning giddily.
“Famous” cuts to black for its final scene, a list of all of the celebrities featured “for being famous.” The song comes in again with a wide shot showing the orgied ensemble in now pristine video quality. West, in the middle like Jesus in Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Last Supper,” turns to the camera for a brief moment.
After thanking those “supporting ideas and truth,” West had one question for the audience: “Would y’all like me to play that back?” Yes, they replied in unison, and he did.
After the encore screening, West continued the party, playing a few of his songs and then turning his attention GOOD Music partners like 2 Chainz and Desiigner, both in attendance. With the Game hanging nearby, 2 Chainz lit up a blunt, Desiigner threw money into the crowd and West looked on proudly at his latest artistic accomplishment which will undoubtedly have the whole world talking.
The video is available now on Tidal.