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The actress who portrayed a nude Melania Trump in T.I.’s promotional video for his new album said she has received death threats recently.
Melanie Marden appeared in a teaser for T.I.’s newest album, Dime Trap, which was released on Oct. 5. The teaser, posted to Twitter on Oct. 12, has been a subject of controversy due to the scandalous way in which Melania is portrayed.
A spokesperson for Melania Trump even called for a boycott of the Atlanta rapper the day the video was released.
Marden saw almost immediate backlash for her decision to play “naked Melania.” In the days following the release of the video, in which she strips down to nothing but a pair of high heels in the Oval Office, the hate mail and angry comments came flooding in. Though she handled everything, including death threats, calmly, this most recent threat concerned her enough to go to the authorities.
The threat came via an unlisted text, which Marden said told her to follow a set of instructions or be “assassinated within the next 24 hours.”
Marden took the message to the police and spent the night at the precinct.
“The detective is coming today to scan for devices or tracking pieces and kind of rule things out one by one,” Marden said to Page Six TV in a remote interview. “This is either a complete whack job trying to terrify me and is, you know, crazy and there’s no validity to it or this is a professional.”
Marden said she was told “no matter where I go in the world and if I try to run, I’ll be assassinated right away,” by the person or people behind the text.
In an Instagram post on Oct. 15, Marden explained her motivations for taking the acting job, in which she sported the controversial “I really don’t care, do u?” jacket that Melania wore on her way to visit migrant children in Texas back in June.
“It was a creative choice for me, and also an opportunity to empower women,” she wrote. “I stand firmly in my decision to share all of myself in this role. I wanted to be brave, be fearless and for the first time in my life do a role that required nudity. The body is nothing to be ashamed of. In this time where women are finally speaking up about being victimized I felt good about being a strong enough woman to portray a nude First Lady.”
Nahila Bonfiglio reports on geek culture and gaming. Her work has also appeared on KUT's Texas Standard (Austin), KPAC-FM (San Antonio), and the Daily Texan.