As Sport’s Illustrated’s Swimsuit cover girl for the second year in a row, Kate Upton takes center stage in the Travel Channel special, “Sports Illustrated: The Making of Swimsuit ’13 — 7 Continents, 17 Wonders,” premiering Feb. 17.
Kate says there was a full-blown blizzard that shut down production after the Sports Illustrated crew arrived in active volcano territory, and she has described the pretty frightening effects of her body literally shutting down while posing nearly naked in the extreme climate. When asked if she has any advice for tourists looking to explore the area around the South Pole, Upton has a wise suggestion.
“I would say keep your clothes on,” says Kate with a knowing laugh. “But definitely go there, because it’s the most beautiful place I’ve ever been.” The 20-year-old model says her travel guide warned her to spend as much time outside as possible while in Antarctica because photography can’t do the scene justice.
Doing justice to the locales, however, is what the Travel Channel sets out to do in the hour-long special. Sports Illustrated Swimsuit editor MJ Day says the goal is to give viewers the “complete immersion” experience the SI team and the models have at each exotic destination on their 230 hour, 90,000 air mile journey. “We have unprecedented access,” says MJ. “We want to give people the all-access we experienced.”
Day describes how each shoot location for the magazine tells its own story — from the personality of the model to the unique culture from the far corners of the world, to the videography and photography style.
Wile some models may go into hyper diet and exercise mode leading up to such an important photo shoot, Kate says she didn’t get a chance to do that for her now infamous Antarctica cover. “Before this shoot I was gone two weeks straight working,” Upton says. “It’s very difficult while traveling.” In looking at the Swimsuit cover, it’s hard to be mad at the results.
“Sports Illustrated: The Making of Swimsuit ’13 — 7 Continents, 17 Wonders” airs Sunday, Feb. 17 on the Travel Channel at 8 p.m. ET/PT.