Filming in the time of coronavirus has required creative workarounds and closely following safety guidelines. While speaking to i-D magazine about her new internet-breaking blockbuster of a music video for “WAP,” her hit single with Megan Thee Stallion, Cardi B revealed that she spent more than $100,000 just on COVID-19 testing for the cast and crew.
Released last Friday (August 7), the Colin Tilley-directed video made liberal use of CGI effects in addition to cameos from Normani, Kylie Jenner, Sukihana, Mulatto and Rosalía.
“It was kind of weird shooting the video in the age of corona,” Cardi told the publication. “Like, we had to spend $100,000 dollars just on testing. Everybody on the shoot had to get tested for coronavirus. We had a tiger and a leopard there, but we didn’t film with them in there because of safety and because of the pandemic. We spliced those scenes together.”
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Fortunately, the effort was well worth it, as “WAP” quickly became the most talked about release of the year. Upon its release, the visual broke the YouTube record for most views in 24 hours by an all-female collab, according to British publication Metro. The single shot to the top spots on Apple Music and Spotify and debuted at No. 6 In the U.K., per Billboard. According to Chart Data, “WAP” is still the most spun record on the global Spotify chart, and it's projected to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart once the final numbers are in.
“Mannn, if this s**t really happens I think imma die for a couple seconds and come back to life,” Cardi B tweeted in response.
While the Bronx-born rapper expected the song to do well, even she was surprised by its meteoric success, telling i-D, “I knew it was gonna have a big impact, I guess, because of me and Megan. But I didn’t know it was going to be so controversial. I never expected that.”
She also didn’t anticipate the conservative outrage over the track’s sensual lyrics. But Cardi remains unbothered. As she tells it, “they keep talking and the numbers keep going up. At the end of the day, whatever they’re saying, the numbers speak for themselves.”