Nothing says “I love you” better than a gigantic billboard. If there were any doubts that Rihanna and Drake are involved, then the ginormous billboard he erected congratulating her has effectively erased them. Rihanna posted her latest prize from her rumored love on her Instagram page as the latest example of their romance was made public. While the singer and the rapper are regularly seen conducting public displays of affection onstage, this gesture is indeed “extra” and will once again raise the question of whether or not they are dating, seeing as they would rather keep us guessing.
What the “One Dance” singer is patting her on the back for wasn’t specified, but Drake and everyone at OVO clearly have her back as she prepares for her VMA performance and Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award acceptance at the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, according to E! News.
While Drake didn’t say why he was congratulating the woman he calls “the most beautiful, talented woman I have ever seen in my life,” the love-struck rapper continues to promote his Views album, for which he is also nominated for four VMA categories. The assumption is that his grand gesture is about Sunday’s ceremony, but her upcoming MTV Lifetime Achievement Award and VMA performance is just the icing on a remarkably well-rounded cake.
Rihanna is constantly extending her brand, and whether it is for her music, rumored romances, fashion collaborations, or acting opportunities, lately it seems as if this is Rihanna’s world and we are just living in it.
MTV Video Music Awards
The music and fashion icon will be celebrated at this year’s festivities, which will be held at Madison Square Garden for the first time in VMA history. It will be a big ceremony for the 28-year-old R&B Diva; Rihanna is nominated in four categories — Best Female Video for “Work,” Best Male Video for her collaboration with Calvin Harris for “This Is What You Came For,” and two in the Best Collaboration category for the aforementioned songs, mentions Hip Hop DX.
Rihanna has already collected two Video of the Year Awards from MTV, 2007’s “Umbrella” and 2012’s “We Found Love” featuring Calvin Harris.
Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award
Rihanna will be this year’s recipient of the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the 2016 MTV Video Awards, and the Barbadian import is being honored for a decade’s worth of music video contributions. Her eight albums have sold more than 61 million units, including Anti, the multi-platinum-selling album she is currently on tour supporting. According to Billboard,Rihanna’s assorted collection of music videos has raked in over 9.6 billion views on YouTube.
Past recipients of the Video Vanguard Award are Britney Spears, Janet Jackson, Beyonce, Kanye West, and of course, Michael Jackson. Do not be surprised if Drake pops up during her performance.
The Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award is a lifetime achievement award given to music influencers who have made substantial contributions to pop culture through performing arts. Rihanna was tapped for greatness the moment her debut video “Pon de Replay” was released in 2005, and she has amassed a collection of much talked about visuals, some with impressive global collaborations with musicians such as Shakira (“Can’t Remember To Forget You”), Paul McCartney and Kanye West (“FourFiveSeconds”), and her rumored side piece Drake, with whom she has collaborated several times (“What’s My Name,” “Take Care,” and “Work”).
Rihanna has continued to broaden her horizons with her successful entry into the fashion world. She has a phenomenal Fenty x Puma line, and she is capitalizing on being the first black woman to become the face of Christian Dior with her futuristic Rihanna x Dior sunglasses collection, simply called “Rihanna.”
— Anne Hathaway (@AHathawayNews) August 26, 2016
Bad Girl Riri hasn’t given up on acting either. After her appearance in Battleship, it was recently announced that she is part of the all-female spinoff of Oceans Eleven titled Oceans 8 with Sandra Bullock, Sarah Paulson, and Anne Hathaway. She is also taking on the iconic role of Marion Crane in the fifth and final season of AMC’s Bates Motel, and Deadline reports that Rihanna has finished shooting Luc Besson’s Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.
What motivated Drake to give the “Love on the Brain” singer such a major shout-out is a mystery, but it is deserved. Rihanna has earned every clap, view, and purchase received. Now, if she will just give Drake a break and get him off of his knees, all of the romantics out there can start fighting over their wedding.
The MTV Video Music Awards will air live on Sunday, August 28, at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
[Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]