What’s more daunting than creating a show that explores modern human sexuality? The answer is simply, doing so in the wake of a global pandemic. Planet Sex with Cara Delevingne is a new six-part original Hulu series which follows the famed People’s Choice Award and SAG Award Nominated actress as she travels to major cities in different countries exploring the reality of physical and social intimacy. Producer Cara Warwick was responsible for the LA shoot/episode of this series. The show presents nearly every lifestyle of the LGBTQIA+ community in an open and forthright manner, embracing the pride and honesty of the community. Known as one of the most liberal and progressive cities in the world, Warwick had an immense amount of responsibility for and impact on the LA based episode. Bringing her experience as a producer for productions on SKY, the BBC, and others, Cara enabled her production team to craft one of the most insightful and enlightening episodes of Planet Sex with Cara Delevingne.
Through the eyes and experiences of Ms. Delevingne, this series takes a decidedly woman-centric perspective on all of the topics presented. Having a strong female professional like Cara Warwick overseeing the production was essential to the overall tone of this episode. While the subject matter of this production exists within the exploration of traditionally sensitive topics, the filming took place in both private and public setting; requiring a respectful sensitivity to not only those featured but also those not in the “cast.” Settings like the picturesque Echo Park near Downtown Los Angeles required a modicum of crowd control and the procurement of street vendors to offer potential interaction scenarios. Others were much more complicated as Cara recalls, “There was a scene that required Cara D and a group of friends to be on a night out. The location needed to be quiet and suitable for filming; private with the impression of being busy but still allowing us to be able to film intimate conversations. I managed to find a private club that allowed us to film but only on a very tight timeline. You also have to remember that this was while the pandemic lockdown was still in effect in California. It took some serious convincing to gain access to this club but you do whatever it takes to get it right and the scenes turned out perfectly.” That’s modesty from Cara as she was responsible for so many facets of this episode including scheduling, logistics, permits, budget, and props as well as field producing and ensuring editorial points were met; to say nothing of managing executives from the UK and the show’s talent.
While Los Angeles may be known for its embrace of different lifestyles, it was not the most accepting of productions that wanted to film during Covid. Social interaction was all but completely prohibited in this Southern California region, meaning that what Ms. Warwick managed to achieve is only fully appreciated when considered in this context. Producing a program like Planet Sex with Cara Delevingne in 2019 or even 2023 would be much less cumbersome than doing so in 2022. Programs like this are impactful to the overall conversation of identity and social relationships. While there may be an open “wink” in regards to the investigation of sexuality, a topic like this does much to push the dialogue forward and open minds. Cara Warwick is a producer who does not think of herself as being an agent of social change but that doesn’t diminish the impact of her work. Cara chooses to focus on the task at hand and daily victories as she professes, “It is always rewarding when you are responsible for producing a show for a large well-known global company and dealing with a team across different continents, time zones, and editorial changes. Despite the challenges faced with all the restrictions and difficulties leading up to and through this shoot, the ability to face any issue head on and still be able to perform my role on this production is something I’m really proud of. There was more than the average amount of issues on shoot days and ensuring that the job got done smoothly is what made everyone else able to do their work at the highest level. That’s what I’ll remember when I recall working on this show.”
Writer: Basil Thomson