Over the past two decades, the budgets for music videos have significantly decreased due to changes in labels’ priorities. During the 90s and 2000s, it was common for artists to spend over $1 million on their music videos. However, with the decline of music video countdown shows that used to boost sales, such high investments no longer seem worthwhile as the videos don’t reach as many viewers.
However, this trend doesn’t apply to Cardi B. The rapper recently revealed to iHeartRadio’s Angela Yee that she spent over $2 million on the video for her new song “Bongos,” featuring Megan Thee Stallion. This wasn’t the original plan, but circumstances led to the increase in budget. Cardi B had initially planned to shoot the video outside the United States, possibly in the Caribbean, but due to hurricane season, they had to relocate to Malibu, California.
The change in location necessitated additional security measures to maintain privacy. Cardi B explained that they hired around 15-20 guards to secure the area due to the constant presence of paparazzi in Malibu. Additionally, they used geofencing technology to create a boundary around the shooting location that would alert them of any cellular activity, such as posting photos or videos online. According to Cardi B, these measures significantly contributed to the overall cost of the video production. The discussion starts around the 16-minute mark in the video below.
Both Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion are Warner Music artists, while Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.