When Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” first hit MTV back in 1983, the idea of a short film music video was an entirely radical concept. Today, the video is iconic, from the dancing zombies to the model who played Michael’s girlfriend. In fact, you’re probably wondering where the “Thriller” girl is today.
Actress and Playboy model Ola Ray beat out thousands of women to be cast in the film and today it’s still considered one of her most important roles. Check out the video to see what she looks like today.
Despite having one of the most coveted roles in music history, Ola has had her fair share of disadvantages for playing Michael’s terrified girlfriend. After Michael’s death in 2009, she stopped receiving royalties and sued Michael’s estate. Michael’s family was ordered to pay her $75,000 from the suit.
However, Ola doesn’t have any ill feelings about Michael himself.
“Michael would always re-release ‘Thriller’ in different packages so that I would get my royalties,” she said in a statement in 2009. “He really did his personal best to help me while he was alive. Unfortunately, the people handling his estate have not been acting according to his wishes since his death.”
And although they’ve worked together, she’s a hardcore Michael fangirl at heart.
“I have a huge poster of Michael, just of himself and then I have the 25th Anniversary album,” she told ABC News in 2010. “Then, I have a picture of us walking together in the video … I see Michael every morning when I wake up.”