Taylor Swift Tells The True Story Behind Katy Perry’s ‘You Need to Calm Down’ Cameo

It’s official: The feud between Katy Perry and Taylor Swift is no more. In fact, the former appeared in the latter’s recent music video for her single, “You Need to Calm Down.” Here’s what Swift said recently about how the cameo came to be.

The feud dates back to 2012

Taylor Swift and Katy Perry
(L-R) Singers Taylor Swift and Katy Perry arrive at the 2011 American Music Awards on November 20, 2011, in Los Angeles, California. | Lester Cohen/AMA2011/WireImage

As you can see above, Swift and Perry were at least on friendly terms in 2011. But the next year, things took a turn: As legend has it, Swift hired backup dancers for her Red tour who happened to be dancers that used to work for Perry. Then, Perry turned around and offered them a spot on her upcoming tour, and they ditched Swift.

Swift later spoke about the incident, saying that Perry “sabotaged” her tour. Perry didn’t take kindly to this. Swift then wrote the song “Bad Blood,” which appeared to reference their feud. Perry responded with her single, “Swish Swish.”

Swift appears to reference Perry in this song

The first verse of the first single off of Swift’s sixth album, Reputation, is transparent. Fans quickly realized it was about her feud with Kim Kardashian and Kanye West. However, the second verse, which refers to “kingdom key” and “a feast” was a bit more difficult, though the sharpest fans recognized the ties to Katy Perry and her song “Bon Appetit.”

If it wasn’t obvious in the song, the subsequent “Look What You Made Me Do” music video seals the deal. During the first chorus, just before that verse, Swift is dressed and styles her hair almost exactly like a particular look of Perry’s. 

A shift came during the ‘Reputation’ tour

View this post on Instagram

feels good @taylorswift

A post shared by KATY PERRY (@katyperry) on

But Perry appears to be the one who came around first. As Swift set off on her Reputation tour in May 2019, she shared a video in her Instagram Stories that melted the hearts of fans. In it, Swift showed a card from Perry, as well as an actual olive branch the singer had sent her.

Naturally, Swift agreed that the time had come to put all of this behind them. In Jun 2019, she sent a present of her own, a plate of chocolate chip cookies, to Perry. On the plate, it reads, “Peace at last” in what appears to be red icing. 

Here’s how the cameo came about

Perry may have had the first word in ending their feud, but Swift took things one step further. However, the reason that she had her in the video wasn’t about their personal beef, but was to comment on the way that women are frequently pitted against one another by the media.

When Swift asked her to be in the video, Perry wrote the following to her, according to a recent interview with Vogue: “‘This makes me so emotional. I’m so up for this. I want us to be that example. But let’s spend some time together. Because I want it to be real.’” Swift added, “So she came over and we talked for hours.”

What Swift and Perry agree on

According to Swift, the two agree that the press blew the fight out of proportion. “We decided the metaphor for what happens in the media,” Swift explained, “is they pick two people and it’s like they’re pouring gasoline all over the floor. All that needs to happen is one false move, one false word, one misunderstanding, and a match is lit and dropped.” 

She continued, “That’s what happened with us. It was: Who’s better? Katy or Taylor? Katy or Taylor? Katy or Taylor? Katy or Taylor? The tension is so high that it becomes impossible for you to not think that the other person has something against you.”

Check out Showbiz Cheat Sheet on Facebook!