When The-Dream and Tricky Stewart first played Rihanna "Hard," they did it almost as a joke. They thought there was no way she'd go for the song ... it was too, well, hard. Little did they know [artist id="1940303"]Rihanna[/artist] was looking to ad some swagger to her Rated R album, and the song was just what she had in mind.
"Funny enough, when I first heard the song, we were in Paris — they flew out there to play me some songs they had done for me, some ideas. And before they played 'Hard,' they were like, 'We're gonna play you the ghetto one first, and you have to do it, you have to do it," Rihanna laughed. "They thought I wouldn't like it, and when I heard it, I just loved it. It had such an attitude and a swagger ... super cocky, and just a fun song. We just thought it was the perfect song for Jeezy [to do a verse on]. It was made for him to collaborate on it. And I think he did an amazing job."
So needless to say, "Hard" made the cut and ended up being tapped as the third single from Rated R. Which is what brought Rihanna to Los Angeles this week, where she shot a video for the track with director Melina Matsoukas. And in keeping with the feel of the song, the video is equally tough: an over-the-top military exercise, only with a decidedly Rihanna touch.
"It's couture military," Rihanna explained. "Everything is surrounded around the idea of something military. We have tanks, we have troops, we've got helicopters, we've got explosions. We've got lots of cute outfits, lots of bullets. It's crazy."
MTV News will have lots more from the set of Rihanna's "Hard" video in the coming days!