Favela Santa Marta (also known as Doña Marta) was given international attention in 1996 when Michael Jackson began fi lming the video for his international hit “They Don’t Really Care about Us” within the favela. At the time, the government of Rio de Janeiro was staunchly against the fi lming and tried to block Jackson’s arrival, arguing that it would bring negative attention to the city and hinder its attempts at rehabilitating its image. However, a higher court overturned the block and allowed fi lming to proceed. At the time, Santa Marta was still under control of the heavily armed drug gang Commando Vermelho. The New York Times reported that Jackson and his team collaborated directly with the traffi ckers to ensure the security of the pop star, even going as far as hiring gang members to act as security. The video became an international sensation, bringing “visibility to poverty and social problems in countries like Brazil without resorting to traditional political discourse” (Nagib 2003: 123).