Rihanna’s first televised interview since her February 8th altercation with Chris Brown finally aired on Friday during the November 6th episode of 20/20. While excerpts of Rihanna’s conversation with Diane Sawyer appeared on Good Morning America earlier last week, the full 20/20 interview provided more details of the assault and its aftermath, including why Rihanna returned to Brown only three weeks after the incident and Rihanna’s reaction to the shocking leaked photograph of her battered face.
“I get very embarrassed, I feel humiliated. I get angry, all over again. Every time I see it, the whole thing plays back in my head,” Rihanna said of the leaked photograph that appeared on TMZ in the days following the assault. “It’s humiliating to see your face like that.” Rihanna also lashed out at those who said she must have provoked Brown in some way prior to the assault. “It’s ignorance,” Rihanna said, adding that at no point did she hit Brown. “Because even if I hit him first, that makes it okay for him to do that to me?”
On March 1st, just three weeks after the incident, Rihanna joined Brown in Miami, something she recognizes now was a “selfish” mistake because of the message it sent to her female fans. “I was still attached by love,” Rihanna said, “but I wasn’t thinking about the reality of the situation. ‘If I feel this depressed, then what is he going through?’ I had to protect him. The whole world hates him now. His fans, his career. He lost me. I just need to let him know, ‘Don’t do anything stupid.’ ” Shortly after their Miami rendezvous, Rihanna ended their relationship.
Just hours before Rihanna’s 20/20 interview aired, Brown’s own MTV interview ran in which he discussed how his life and career have changed since the incident. He cited one occasion when he went to an amusement park and people shouted things like “woman beater.” “I’m human, so when I hear certain things that they say or if I go somewhere and I hear somebody be rude about it, it’s just like, ‘Man, it’s a mistake,’ ” Brown said. “I made a big mistake. I’m learning from it. Like, I’m not saying, ‘Who are they to judge?’ because, I mean, everybody’s entitled to their own opinion on how they feel, but it hurts.”
While Brown has been reluctant to discuss what transpired in the rented Lamborghini on the night of February 8th — he said he wanted to respect Rihanna’s privacy — Rihanna didn’t hold back in her interview with Sawyer. After the 20/20 interview, Brown issued a statement saying, “While I respect Rihanna’s right to discuss the specific events of February 8, I maintain my position that all of the details should remain a private matter between us. I do appreciate her support and wish her the best. I am extremely sorry for what I did, and I accept accountability for my actions.”
With the incident finally behind her, Rihanna has begun to once again focus on her career as her new album, Rated R, will hit stores November 23rd. The album has already spawned two singles, “Russian Roulette” and “Wait Your Turn,” while a third track “Hard” has been leaked online. After joining Jay-Z and Kanye West to perform “Run This Town” on the Jay Leno Show in September, Rihanna reprised her role by taking the stage in front of a large audience for the first time since February 8th with a surprise cameo at Jay-Z’s Los Angeles concert last night, RihannaDaily writes. Rihanna is set to sing at the American Music Awards on November 22. She’s also rumored to perform at this year’s Grammy Awards nominations show on December 2nd, but when asked whether this was true, a Grammy spokesperson told RS “not to our knowledge.”