Model who played Justin Bieber's love interest in new video says death threats are nothing compared to growing up in Moldova

"People don't leave there. They survive, that's why we're tough," says Xenia Deli

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The Independent Online

The model who played Justin Bieber’s love interest in his new video "What Do You Mean?" has revealed that the pop star’s passionate fans have sent her death threats after seeing her with their idol.

But 25-year-old Xenia Deli says she tries not to be phased by the cyberbullying because it’s nothing compared to her difficult upbringing in the Republic of Moldova, a small country between Romania and Ukraine.

“People don’t leave there,” she told Broadly. “They survive. That’s why we’re so tough.”

Deli said she had been unprepared for the hatred she would inspire from Bieber’s decidedly passionate fanbase and has stopped reading comments online.


“Whatever they do, it doesn’t say anything about me, it says more about them,” she told Harpers Bazaar ahead of Bieber’s performance at the VMAs.

“I didn’t do anything wrong, I was just doing my job. I’m not taking Justin away from his fans."

Deli studied literature and planned on becoming a teacher, but after visiting friends in South Carolina she says she decided to move to the US.


“Compared to Moldova, South Carolina is a dream,” she said. “We have a good education. Everything’s the same [as America]. It’s just poor.”

She explains that when she auditioned for the video, which sees her character and Bieber get kidnapped, only to escape and end up in a nightclub, she didn’t know she’d be playing the love interest of one of the most famous singers in the world, and only met Bieber on the first day of shooting.

But despite being thrust in the spotlight, sadly she isn’t a big fan of his music.

“I usually listen to Russian music because I miss home so much, and at least listening to Russian music makes me feel like home.”