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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Crafting the Perfect Live Shot


Going into the day on Wednesday, I knew that I wanted to produce a live shot for our 6 p.m. show. But of course, there were a few hiccups along the road.

My first thought was to send our Buzz Anchor, JJ Maldonado, to the Furious 7 premiere at the Chinese Theater in Hollywood. I thought this would be a fun way to engage viewers and test our off campus live shot abilities. Unfortunately, we had a scheduling conflict with our camera operator and I was told that sending a reporter to a crowded area could cause serious technical difficulties with the live signal. After being a little bit disappointed that my first idea couldn’t pan out as planned, I was forced to think of something else. 

Luckily, in the afternoon news broke about Governor Jerry Brown’s mandatory water restrictions so we decided this would be a great opportunity to focus on how this would affect USC and send a reporter to cover the story live. We thought it would be great to get a live shot from an area on campus that obviously used up a lot of water.

So we sent ATVN reporter, Ani Ucar, to Hahn Plaza for a live shot in front of green grass and large trees to highlight the issue at USC. The shot worked so well there that we also decided to have Ani do a live tease as well. This required even more communication with Ani, our camera operator, and the studio. We stayed in constant communication and tested the shot multiple times in run through, which I believe was the reason why our live shot was such a success. 

Prior to the live shot, I was certainly a little bit worried since we had technical difficulties last week. But, it was evident this week that we had definitely learned from our mistakes last week and the live shot went perfectly!

Ultimately, after all of our hard work, I was really happy with the way the live shot worked out.

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