Nicki Minaj already has a reputation for pulling off shocking outfits and spitting even more insane stuff on her records. However, her latest video, "Moment 4 Life," may surprise some of her die-hard fans, as Minaj swaps her edgy costumes for graceful, ladylike looks and runs off with her Prince Charming — in this case, it's Young Money bestie Drake — and gets married under a firework display.
Shortly after the premiere of the video on MTV on Thursday evening, Minaj sat down with MTV News' Sway and explained the development of the fairytale narrative and said that catching her fans off guard is just what she was looking for.
"I definitely went back and forth with [director] Chris [Robinson] a lot. I just wanted it to be something a little bit unexpected," she said. Minaj added she initially had a more bottle-poppin' vibe in mind, which was eventually replaced by the romantic story line. "First I wanted it to be like, really just a celebration and a party," she admitted. "But I had the idea of making it more of a romance. Chris just sort of took those little bits and pieces and ran with it, and then it became sort of this big Cinderella thing."
The concept of the video may have evolved over time, but Minaj said that her first choice to jump on the track was always Drizzy, who provided her with the instrumental.
"Drake came to the studio one night and he brought me a whole bunch of beats when I was wrapping up the [Pink Friday] album. This 'Moment 4 Life' was one of the beats, and he was like, 'Just do whatever. Whatever you pick, I'm just gonna rock with you.' I had the beat for a while, maybe, like, over a month, and I was just sitting on it — pause — and next thing you know, I was shooting [the video for] 'Right Thru Me' and I played this beat for everybody in my dressing room, and I was like, 'Do you like this beat?' Everybody said, 'Yeah.' And I just went to the studio the next day, and I laid the hook and I sent it to Drake and I didn't know if he was gonna like it, blah blah blah, and he was like, 'I love it.' "
Drizzy mused that their parallel journeys as budding hip-pop superstars made the inspirational track a perfect fit.
"He was like, 'It makes sense for me and you.' We both are at a place right now that we feel like we wish we could have this moment for life," she recalled. "We don't know what's gonna happen next year, but this moment feels amazing. He was obviously my first choice to be on it."
What do you think of Nicki and Drake in "Moment 4 Life"? Let us know in the comments!