Behind the Scenes
Over the summer of 2017, the only thing that was just as popular as Cardi B’s “Bodak Yellow” was the video for the track. While the single literally broke records, the video earned more than 450 million views. Coming in at a little under four minutes, the video has shots of Cardi on a camel, near an exotic car, and next to a fully-grown cheetah.
As the rapper’s stardom continues to grow, the director of her breakout music video, Picture Perfect, reflected on how it got made. He shared his thought process on the video’s concept as well as the major scare they had on set.
Apparently, the cheetah shown in the track’s video “attacked” Cardi.
As “Bodak Yellow” was the single that put Cardi on the map, it was only right that the video for it be absolutely bomb. The dessert-set video was filmed in Dubai. According to Picture Perfect, that setting inspired a lot of the video’s theme.
“I felt like, if we’re gonna be in Dubai then she’s gotta kind of… um… relate to the culture,” the director began. Speaking on Cardi’s wardrobe, he said, “The women that got her these outfits, they’re actually from Dubai. She’s all wrapped up. She’s barely showing any skin. She didn’t wanna sell her body with her music.”
Moving on to discuss the exotic animals in the video, the director shared that he proposed adding a cheetah to the mix. “It was my idea. I wrote it into the treatment. I just didn’t know how hard it was gonna be to get a cheetah out there,” he said.
“We actually got this cheetah from a sultan out there,” he continued, pointing to a freeze frame of Cardi sitting next to the cat. “He’s actually calm right here.”
Picture Perfect went on to share raw clips of a scene they attempted to shoot, showing Cardi rapping while holding the animal’s leash.
“We shot this other scene that we didn’t use,” the director said. “And he attacked Cardi in that scene.”
Wearing a form-fitting patent leather dress and matching thigh-high boots, Cardi can be seen carefully rapping next to the cheetah. In the middle of her verse, the cat turns and sits up, hissing towards her.
A frightened Cardi didn’t let go of the leash, but she did jump back. After yelling for someone to come “hold him,” the cat was taken from her. “We got her spirits back up,” Picture Perfect said, before showing how they shot the scene that was actually added to the video.