Fans weren't the only ones who were surprised by Chris Brown being on the "Birthday Cake" remix. The-Dream, who produced the record, was also taken by surprise when Rihanna dropped the news of the song. Apparently, she casually mentioned it to him while he was out in Miami, but he fully supported the record either way.
“At the end of the day, she’s my friend, so whatever she wants to do is whatever she wants to do. [Rihanna called saying] “I think I’m gonna put Chris on it, I don’t know which Chris you talkin’ about, [but] OK, cool, whatever you say.” When she raised the question to me, I know she’s not crazy. So my thought was you’ve been thinking about this, you’ve already thought it out, so evidently you know what reaction you gonna get.”
Radio Killa also spoke on why the record was only a minute long on Talk That Talk, mentioning in his writing process, he only writes up to the hook in case the artist doesn't like the song to begin with.