Did Robin Thicke assault this model on “Blurred Lines” music video set?
The #MeToo Movement gained massive popularity in America in 2017. First coining the phrase on Myspace back in 2006, Tarana Burke’s purpose was to empower women who had experienced sexual harassment or abuse through empathy & solidarity. The tactic of using it on social media was to publicize and address allegations, especially in the workplace.
It didn’t gain widespread use until the Harvey Weinstein case over a decade later when Alyssa Milano suggested all women who had been sexually harassed post the hashtag as a status to give people an idea of the magnitude of the problem. She was followed by Gwyneth Paltrow, Ashley Judd, Jennifer Lawrence, and Uma Thurman.
While Weinstein’s case was instrumental in illuminating the epidemic in Hollywood, there have been many cases in the music industry as well. Those cases include allegations against R. Kelly by four women in 2019 and the late Michael Jackson. Both series of allegations following documentaries about the respective stars (Surviving R. Kelly & Leaving Neverland). The newest allegation has been leveled against another music industry heavy-hitter, Robin Thicke.
Robin Thicke in the industry
As the son of Growing Pains star Alan Thicke and Days of Our Lives star Gloria Loring, Robin Thicke seemed born for the spotlight. He began his career at a young age with acting roles in The Wonder Years & Growing Pains. However, his true love was music, getting his start with Brian McKnight as a mentor.
He released multiple albums in the 2000s under Pharrell Williams’s label Star Trak, reaching commercial success in 2006 with “Lost Without U” reaching number fourteen on the Billboard Top 100. Thicke didn’t receive worldwide acclaim until the release of his 2013 hit, “Blurred Lines”.
The video, released March 20th, garnered more than a million views in the first week. The subsequent live performance at the Grammys was the most tweeted event of all time, generating 360,000 tweets. Thicke seemed poised to take over the music industry, but something darker was brewing underneath.
The emergence of Emily Ratajkowski
Ratajkowski first appeared on the cover of Treats! in 2012, securing her appearance in two music videos. “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke & “Love Somebody” by Maroon 5. Those appearances catapulted her to stardom as they caught the attention of Sports Illustrated for their swimsuit issue and Ben Affleck, who chose her for a role in his film, Gone Girl. She has been a mainstay since.
On top of her stardom, Ratajkowski has used her platform to do fundraising & public service announcements for Planned Parenthood & body positivity. She defended Kim Kardashian from criticism when the latter posted controversial photos and jointly advocated that women should be free to express their bodies to whomever they choose.
She has a collection of essays to be released in her upcoming debut book, My Body. In this book, she speaks about an incident in 2012 while filming the video for “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke.
Allegations against Thicke
The Sunday Times has published one of her essays that levels an accusation on the music star’s behavior on the “Blurred Lines” set. While she spoke about enjoying the experience of filming, she suddenly felt a stranger’s hands cup her bare breasts from behind. “I instinctively moved away, looking back at Robin Thicke,” she wrote.
She continued, “He smiled a goofy grin and stumbled backward, his eyes concealed behind his sunglasses.” The essay goes on to state that the video’s director, Diane Martel, stepped in to scold Thicke and decided to shut down the shoot. Ratajkowski urged them to continue.
When asked why she never spoke up, she responded with, “I was an unknown model, and if I had spoken out or complained, I would not be where I am today; I would not be famous.” Thicke or his representatives have yet to comment on the allegations.
“I hope people are able to read the essay and understand the nuance behind these kinds of situations,” she told People in an interview. My Body goes on sale November 9th, 2021, and will be available in hardcover, digital audio, and e-book.