By, Michael Gonzalez, Producer, Teleprompter Operator
I am humbled and grateful that I was requested by name to once again work as a teleprompter operator with CBS Studios in New York City for “Inside the NFL” Season 8. We worked at the main broadcast facility on West 57th Street.
I was beyond ecstatic and honored to be in a place where countless significant events took place. The origins of CBS date back to 1927. It has an incredible history, much too long and complicated to write about here but I will mention a few highlights.
My favorite bit of television history is the fact that when Charlie Chaplin (a god among gods) finally succumbed and allowed the world to hear his voice after two decades in silent films, he chose to do it over the airwaves of CBS!
In 1934, CBS launched an independent news division and soon thereafter hired Edward R. Murrow. Everyone knows about this giant in news reporting.
In 1938, CBS became immersed in the infamous faux news broadcast of the radio adaptation of H.G. Wells’s “The War of the Worlds”, performed by Orson Welles. Many listeners panicked and actually believed invaders from Mars were attacking and devastating Grover’s Mill, New Jersey.
Soap operas emerged in the 1930s and have remained an incredibly successful source of income and a wide audience for CBS. “Guiding Light”, for example aired on the radio in 1937 and then in 1952 began airing on CBS. Until its cancellation in 2009 it boasted of being the oldest soap opera out there. “As the World Turns” was another soap opera that aired on CBS for 54 years from 1956 to 2010.
Am certain that I am not the only one to advance the idea that soap operas declined in popularity, mostly because many of the women who were part of that loyal audience are no longer at home during the day. They are working!
The Miss USA pageant aired on CBS from 1963 until 2002. This same year Donald Trump and NBC gained half-ownership of the pageant. The pageants were first shown on NBC in 2003.
In 2015, NBC and Univision severed their business relationships with Mr. Trump and his company, after the incendiary remarks he made as he kicked off his presidential campaign.
I was fully aware of the incredible history of this place, as I mentioned above. I felt a tug at the realization that I was working in the same studio where so many of my late grandmother’s favorite shows were taped. Another of her favorite TV shows, “The Price is Right” premiered on CBS in 1972. It is actually the longest continuously running daytime game show on network television. I was overwhelmed, I remembered her fondly and became maudlin at the thought of this amazing connection!
I have to stop going down history lane and tell you more about my latest adventure in teleprompting.
Again, I had to pinch myself, here I was working for one of my personal favorite TV shows, “Inside the NFL”. As the title implies its focus is on the National Football League.
This game changing show originally aired on HBO from 1977 through 2008. Then, the Showtime Network picked it up.
It was here that I met producer, Michele Buson. She hired me as the Camera Teleprompter Operator for last year’s promotional throws to all of CBS Sports’ corresponding networks.
And now I find myself working among people I know and respect. To be invited again for the Season 8 premiere is nothing short of awesome.
Michele and her production team ended up working in tandem with yours truly and my favorite Teleprompter unit. I am talking about our professional Autocue Teleprompter System with upgraded HD Proscan Monitors. I know from previous experience that we would need our QTV Ultra Bright Monitor, so I provided that as well. The reason we need this important monitor is because of the amount of Kino lights set up.
My main concern and goal as a teleprompter operator is to always keep the client as happy as possible. I take no chances with potential glare and low light issues with our teleprompters. It is also comforting to know there is back-up equipment. That feeling is infectious. It makes everyone feel better.
We, at American Movie Company and Teleprompter Rental have made that a major priority for all of our operators no matter how large or small the client.
This particular promotional commercial was interesting on many levels. I was the Teleprompter Operator for the National Football League (NFL) Hall of Famer Boomer Esiason. Aside from being one of the NFL’s greatest quarterbacks for the New York Jets, Cincinnati Bengals, and Arizona Cardinals, he is the current color commentator for the NFL and the host of “Inside The NFL”.
For those who might not know…
A color commentator is the person who must have encyclopedic knowledge of the game. He provides interesting tidbits and statistics about the players. Most color commentators have played or coached the game. The term “color” refers to the humor and frivolity provided by these announcers. Levity adds color to the game!
Of all the many celebrities and CEO’s for whom I’ve prompted, Boomer is without a doubt one of the most energetic, professional, one-take wonders.
We went through numerous scripts for Verizon, Comcast, and DirectTV. Each line was delivered meticulously with no mistakes.
I will take some credit for the perfect flow of lines as I always scroll the text according to the speed of the speaker. This leads to a more natural performance in front of the camera.
After the shoot, I got to watch part of an episode. It was incredible! The interesting thing about the show is that it has the freedom to stray from the often boring, traditional network format. It is not just like any other sports recap show, but one that features highlights of the week’s games and a full discussion of events around the league.
My favorite part about watching the live taping of “Inside the NFL” was the fact that there were no commercial breaks. This allowed the panel to discuss football subjects at length without the normal network time restrictions. This was truly a memorable experience. I look forward to coming back next year and the year after that.
I am also eager to write another blog about the premiere of Season 9. Hope you will read it with alacrity.
American Movie Company (AmericanMovieCO.com) and its subsidiary, TeleprompterRental.com are the most reliable places to go to for all your Teleprompter needs
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American Movie Company and its subsidiary TeleprompterRental.com are the most reliable places to go to for all your Teleprompter needs… even Inside the NFL.