In a new 10-minute documentary with never-before-seen footage posted by the magazine on VF.com, Jenner, the magazine’s editor Graydon Carter and the small host of staff who worked on putting the cover together detailed the crazy steps that were taken to ensure the story was kept under wraps.
“I’ve basically been inside this house for the last three months. I haven’t really left,” explained Jenner during the photo shoot. “It’s difficult because I can’t go out and be seen by the paparazzi, they’re literally sitting down there.”
Jenner went on to explain that she couldn’t even walk around the corner of her house because the paparazzi had taken illegal shots of her from the other side of the mountain.
“I would wear sweatshirt with hoods on them,” she continued. “And if my fingernails were polished – it was just hell. It was really, really tough on me.”
As for the magazine, editors hired special security for the May 5 shoot.
“We brought in the security that we use for the Oscar party, for the White House Correspondents Dinner,” said Carter. “We had security at the photo shoots, we had security at the printer.”
Moving forward with the cover, the photos and text were put onto a single computer that was kept offline and the designer, copy editor and researcher all worked on that one computer. Once the files were complete, they were uploaded onto a thumb drive that was hand-delivered to the printer by the magazine’s associate managing editor, Ellen Kiell.
But despite the difficulties Jenner and her VF team faced, the 65-year-old former Olympian had nothing but positive words to say about the experience and found herself getting emotional towards the end of the shoot.
“Honestly, I think we accomplished a lot of things today,” said Jenner. “They put this mirror up behind me when I was doing the shoot, I had this rocking black outfit on, and I kind of from a distance looked in the mirror and I go, ‘Oh my god,'” she continued. “It’s the first time I’d ever really seen an image of me – of who I am – I mean, over-the-top better than I thought it would ever be, especially at my age. And seeing that image was powerful to me. I kind of looked down and said ‘You know what, this is going to work. We’re going to be okay with this.’ So yeah, we move forward. I am so excited about the future.”
Jenner’s eight-episode docuseries, I Am Cait, airs Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on E!