After Launch of New Music Video, Beyonce the Latest to be Accused of Stealing Photographers’ Ideas

Over the years, there have been countless accusations of theft when it comes to music videos liberally borrowing ideas from other sources. Examples pervade, like the lawsuit against singer Rihanna and her label filed by photographer David LaChapelle who claimed a recent video of hers had directly swiped ideas, or the complaints raised by artists and the internet after an inspired-by-photos-found-on-Fffound music video appeared for a collaboration between Charlotte Gainsbourg and Beck. Now the latest to take some of that heat is Beyonce, who premiered her latest cinematic epic, “Run the World (Girls)“, this past Wednesday. The Guardian‘s Alex Needham went through the video, picking out the various elements Beyonce and director Francis Lawrence had directly “borrowed” from, most notably the work of photographers Pieter Hugo and Ed Kashi. “Is it homage, or appropriation?” Needham asks. We’ll leave it up to you to decide what’s wrong and what’s right. But before you make your final decision, we highly recommend reading the last two posts (written during LaChapelle-Rihanna-gate) at 30frames, which tackles the entirety of the question, calling out some of the “we’re shocked by this sort of theft of ideas!” internet-based hypocrisy.