February 27, 2009
Posted: 2008 GMT

You might not have realized it today, because we spent half the show in Obama coverage, but we had a set malfunction. To be more specific, the small wall – or the background wall that flashes graphics behind Hala during her camera shots – wasn't working. Thus, we had to move her to a position which she doesn't normally use. Steve, the director (of course you'll remember him from the last blog on Facebook) came into the studio early, as usual, and we repositioned the camera so that we could use the large wall, which we run our video on, as her backdrop as well.


The most important facet of the shot change, though, sits with the cameramen because they need to adjust to their new shots – which they're unaccustomed to – and maintain a fluidity, as if everything was scripted and part of a normal show.


I'll use all this as an ideal segue to introduce said cameramen. They are: Marc, the bald magician as I call him (he faintly resembles the great actor Sydney Poitier) and Matt, the dough-faced hawk-boy (he looks like a half-asleep Matt Dillon,) a nickname which I just came up with and kind of like.


Matt operates the steadi-cam, a camera designed to give the operator maximum mobility throughout the studio. It’s attached to a long arm which in turn is connected to a complex upper-body suit which faintly resembles a bullet-proof vest covered in buckles. All those roaming shots throughout the studio—they’re Matt.


Marc operates the Jib, which basically looks like a mechanical giraffe with a camera for a head. He gets all those glorious high, swooping shots.


Basically, without these two, the show would consist of a bunch of static shots—and a whole lot of the same. With them we get all the movement that makes I-Desk a symphony of alternating camera shots.


And before I go, I’d like to insert a gratuitous shout out to Javier, the producer, who is back with us after a bout with some phantom illness that surely kept him home from Salsa Tuesdays at the Mango Club. Javier, show your face more!


Till next time, behave.

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Filed under: Behind the scenes •I

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Gaurav Jha   February 27th, 2009 8:19 pm ET

Hey Zach, looks like you misspelt the word "behind" in your title.

Fawad Ali   February 28th, 2009 10:04 am ET


Nice and quite a revealing description of “behind the scenes efforts”. You have made us feel like we were in the studio.......kind of thing program-hosts would like to keep it to themselves.

Rados, Serbia   February 28th, 2009 3:57 pm ET

This is interesting, I've noticed that Hala didn't walk to that blue platform but to the small desk she uses later in the show. You did a nice job to hide that wall which didn't work.

I love all the moving and different camera shots on IDesk, keep it up.

Daniyal Pejman   February 28th, 2009 8:29 pm ET

whatever happening in the show i love the show and i enjoy.god bless you and keeping work.

bignkeng   March 2nd, 2009 5:36 pm ET

hi hala concerning AIG i do not know why the American government wants to used good money to chess bad money yes AIG is too big to fail but they are too big to make the rogue investment that have put them in red now, AIG should sell what is not making money and keep what is making money so the government should not put any dollar on AIG.
the nethrland

Mark   March 2nd, 2009 7:23 pm ET

We know Matt well – we see him toddle off just after the opening shot during the Introduction.

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International Desk brings viewers into the heart of the largest news gathering operation in the world. Viewers don't come here to watch the news; they come here to be immersed in it. To feel the rush of being the first to know what's happening as stories break, and to leave knowing they've gotten the best and latest information available. The show airs Mon-Fri at 1900 CET.

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