Mark Romanek, who directed Taylor Swift's new "Shake It Off" video, is defending his work against claims it's racist.

"We simply choose styles of dance that we thought would be popular and amusing," Romanek told Vulture. "And cast the best dancers that were presented to us without much regard to race or ethnicity."

"If you look at it carefully, it's a massively inclusive piece," he said. "It's very, very innocently and positively intentioned. And -- let's remember -- it's a satirical piece. It's playing with a whole range of music video tropes and cliches and stereotypes."

Swift has been under fire since releasing the video earlier this week. In the footage, Swift goes through a number of looks and moods, including a ballerina tutu, Lady Gaga-like wig, and more.

Singer Taylor Swift and LL Cool J perform at the Grammy nominations concert, at Bridgestone Arena on December 5, 2012 in Nashville, Tennessee.
Singer Taylor Swift and LL Cool J perform at the Grammy nominations concert, at Bridgestone Arena on December 5, 2012 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Some people didn't like Swift's hip-hop outfit of cutoff shorts, cropped leopard print jacket, and gold hoop earrings, which she wears while crawling underneath a row of twerking dancers.

According to Us Weekly, rapper Earl Sweatshirt slammed the video on Twitter took to his Twitter to slam the visuals.

"Haven't watched the Taylor Swift video and I don't need to watch it to tell you that it's inherently offensive and ultimately harmful," Sweatshirt wrote. "Perpetuating black stereotypes to the same demographic of white girls who hide their prejudice by proclaiming their love of the culture ... . For instance, those of you who are afraid of black people but love that in 2014 it's OK for you to be trill or twerk or say (N-bomb)."


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He knows this ... but he didn't watch it.

Romanek, who's worked on videos like Nine Inch Nails' "Closer," Michael and Janet Jackson's "Scream" and others said Swift came up with the concept. "This basic idea was all Taylor's," he told Vulture. "We met and she told me that she wanted to make a sort of paean to the awkward ones, the 'uncool' kids that are actually cooler than the 'cool' kids. She said she wanted to shoot all these styles of dance and then be the individualist dork in the midst of these established genres."

Romanek said Sweatshirt should -- go figure -- watch the video before passing judgement. "In a way, the whole video is just a setup for that moment," he said. "And this is why, I think, if Earl Sweatshirt was open-minded enough to take the four minutes to watch it, he might see what the larger, humanistic, and utterly color-blind message was intended to be."

Contact Tony Hicks at Facebook.com/BayAreaNewsGroup.TonyHicks or Twitter.com/tonyhicks67.