September 13, 2009
It begins. On this fateful day in New York City, a 19-year-old Taylor was at the MTV Video Music Awards, accepting the Best Female Video award for unrequited love anthem ‘You Belong with Me’. During her cute acceptance speech, Kanye jumped up on the stage and grabbed the mike, interrupting with the now-immortal words: “Yo, Taylor, I’m really happy for you and I’mma let you finish, but Beyone had one of the best videos of all time. One of the best videos of all time!”
If you Google the words “sad kitten”, you’ll get a pretty good approximation of what Taylor’s face looked like during this whole fiasco, while MTV’s cameras cut to Beyonce herself looking horrified in the audience. Once Kanye had shrugged and handed the mic back to Taylor, her time was up.
Meanwhile, Taylor addresses the incident on The View: “My overall thought process was something like: ‘Wow, I can’t believe I won, this is awesome, don’t trip and fall, I’m gonna get to thank the fans, this is so cool. Oh, Kanye West is here. Cool haircut. What are you doing there?’ And then, ‘Ouch.’ And then, ‘I guess I’m not gonna get to thank the fans.'” She also confirms that Kanye has not reached out to her to apologise.
Following her appearance on The View, Kanye calls Taylor personally to apologise. “He was very sincere in his apology, and I accepted that apology,” she said.
September 4, 2010
Kanye apologises publicly via the then-exciting-and-new social media platform of Twitter: “I’m sorry, Taylor,” he wrote. “We’re both artists, and the media and managers are trying to get between us. She deserves the apology more than anyone. Thank you [Twitter co-founders] Biz Stone and Evan Williams for creating a platform where we can communicate directly.” During the heartfelt barrage of tweets, Kanye also reveals he’s written a song for Taylor.
3 May, 2011
Taylor and Kanye have at least publicly buried the hatchet. On the red carpet at the Met Costume Institute Gala, “the two exchanged a studiedly casual, “down low” high five”, but it’s clear things are still strained.
25 October, 2012
A Rolling Stone profile reveals that Swift has a memento of the VMAs moment in her Nashville home: “Above the fireplace, which is emblazoned with a small heart, there’s even a photo of the moment Kanye stormed her VMA stage (captioned, “Life is full of little interruptions,” a phrase that’s also in the liner notes of her last album), right next to what is presumably the actual award in question under glass.”
11 June, 2013
Kanye all-but officially takes back his apology, telling The New York Times that he only apologized in the first place because he’d caved to peer pressure. “I don’t have one regret,” he says of the VMAs incident.
A new leaf has been seriously turned over. Not only are Taylor and Kanye super-pally backstage at the 2015 Grammys, but there are rumors of a collaboration, following Taylor’s final transition out of country and into pop with 1989.
“She wants to get in the studio and we’re definitely going to go in,” Kanye tells Ryan Seacrest. “I don’t have an elitism about music, I don’t discriminate.” A few days after the Grammys, the pair are seen grabbing dinner together at New York hotspot The Spotted Pig, adding grist to that rumor mill.
At the 2015 VMAs, six years after the little interruption that started it all, Taylor presents Kanye with the Video Vanguard Award, the most public confirmation yet of their newfound alliance.
Forget musical collaboration – Kanye and Taylor literally want to rule the world together. Or at least America. After Kanye announces his plans to run for President in 2020, Taylor volunteers as his running mate.
15 February, 2016
Another awards show, another landmark moment in the KanTay saga. After Taylor wins Album of the Year for 1989, she swipes back at Kanye in what can only be described as a perfect real-life subtweet.
“As the first woman to win Album of the Year at the Grammys twice, I want to say to all the young women out there—there are going to be people along the way who are going to try to undercut your success or take credit for your accomplishments or your fame,” Swift said, naming absolutely no names.
“But if you just focus on the work and you don’t let those people sidetrack you, someday when you get where you’re going, you’ll look around and you will know that it was you and the people who love you who put you there. And that will be greatest feeling in the world.”
Is the feud over? Not even close, says Chrissy Teigen: “I’ll tell you, it’s not over. This is going to go on. This is being waged.”