CBS and even more celebrity sightings

Yesterday was great in the fact it made me realize I want to work at CBS. I want to write for CBS shows or the news or something, but working there would be fantastic. We took a tour of some of the studios where they do CBS Evening News and CBS Sports and Sunday Morning and the thing that stood out to me the most was the people were all so friendly! Like, the guy who took us around. His name was Rob Odorisio. He is a set designer for The Early Show and some other shows. He worked for nine years on Guiding Light before it was canceled and now he is director of set design for all sorts of things. But, he was extremely interested in showing us around and answering all of our questions. And then we would walk by people working there backstage and they all said “Hi” or “Hello” or they would tease Rob and then say he was a great guy or Rob and some other guys hanging around backstage would banter back and forth and I just got the feeling that the atmosphere there was a great place to work. Plus, when we saw the news rooms and offices and things like that it was all so professional yet slightly relaxed. But that could have been because there really wasn’t any late, great, breaking news at the time and it was the middle of the day so people were just milling around.

But I loved it, and afterwards I overheard Danielle talking to Rob and she said something like, “From the murmuring I hear, you might have just stole the whole trip with this tour.” There have been so many things we’ve done that sometimes they all just blur together, but this will definitely be something I remember for a long time.

And empty stage with hanging cameras Rob showed us first. This was actually one of the sound stages I believe that they shot Guiding Light on, if I remember correctly.  Now it’s relatively empty and sometimes rented out to other studios.

The giant green screen in the studio where Sunday Morning is shot. And Inside Edition, which is what they use this HUGE green screen for. It was new, actually, and when we arrived, they were putting the SM set back together.

Set of Sunday Morning

Our group on the set.

Next we visited the set where CBS Sports is shot. AMAZING! They were currently switching it over from football to basketball because the NBA draft was that night. I didn’t really understand what they had to switch it over to because there really wasn’t any great defining feature that led me to believe they would be talking about basketball and not football. It just looked like a regular news room where they discussed sports.

Hailey, me, and Alexa.

We were shown some control panel rooms where the *don’t know the name of the job of the person who does this* controls which camera (1, 2, or 3, etc) is on for each shot during the news or sports broadcast or interview. It was so cool. Kind of like in the movies when they show television shows with the person doing that.

This was the metal world that sat behind Walter Cronkite for however many years he led The Evening News. Rob joked that it should be in the Smithsonian but instead it was sitting backstage just using up space.

This was a space designated for some constructing of some sets. They were working on things for CBS Sports when we got there. It reminded me of a wood shop room. Rob said it was great because, as director of set design, he could go in there and kind of explain what he needed, draw it out of he had to, and the crew would begin working on it.

We were shown around by a different guy (I can’t remember his name!) the set of CBS Evening News. SO COOL. The camera in the first picture is nailed to the ground. Nowadays they don’t really have cameras handled by a person, but it’s electronic and with a switch of a button, it will move to a different angle or direction.

The guy asked if we had any questions so I asked, “Can we get a picture behind the desk?” He had to go ask the prop guy who moved the chair for us (apparently we weren’t allowed to touch Scott Pelley’s chair?) and we took turns in groups taking our picture behind the desk of CBS Evening News!

The room behind the set, separated only by glass, was the news room where, obviously, the news was collected. There were offices on the top level that you can kind of see. Not a lot of people were there since it was two o’clock, but I’m sure they would be back soon to start prepping for that night’s show.

All in all, it was a fabulous experience to see the behind the scenes of some of the top news programs in the US and how each thing functioned and the role people played in making it look like it did when we see it across our TV’s. BET, I learned, shoots its 106 and Park there and MTV was also an affiliate channel of CBS so they sometimes used the sets for shoots. We used it as well and Rob said he worked on some wedding show once, as we explained what he does as a set designer.

As to more celebrity sightings here in the Big Apple, apparently Josh Groban either (I couldn’t get clarification on this) passed us on the street as we were walking down 57th toward CBS Studios or we passed him in the hallway while we were in CBS Studios on our tour. Regardless, I think only three people realized it was him and by the time we all found out we’d just passed Josh Grobin, he was gone. I should start paying more attention to my surroundings.
Apparently Obama and Michelle were in the city that night as well to see Sister Act and Justin Bieber was at Macy’s promoting his new fragrance for women – where he was consequently trampled. (as well as appearing on The Today Show and The Late Show With David Letterman).

C’mon. I’m finally admitting that the kid is kind of a cutie.

Afterward, Olivia found this burrito place called Burrito Box where some of us got burritos for lunch. It was seriously the best burrito I’ve ever had, and that’s saying something because I LOVE MSU’s Serrano’s burritos. But, this was well worth it. Anyway, we went there and then some of us (including me) headed back to I-house and the others left to go find somewhere to eat, like a park or something. Well, we weren’t really near Central Park and the cafe’s weren’t large enough to accommodate our group so they went to Whole Foods in Columbus Circle and ate in the cafe there. While they were there, Jen was in the produce section and nearly ran into Neil Patrick Harris. Literally, she said. She said he was trying to be inconspicuous, you could tell, and New Yorkers aren’t obnoxious, going around asking every celebrity they see for an autograph or picture, so she didn’t want to bother him and create a scene. And she said she tried not to follow him around. So, she went and found Olivia who was standing in line and NPH ended up being a few people behind them in line. They kind of waited for him to check out and Olivia stood right behind him on the escalator and had Jen take a picture of her as he was walking away. It’s so comical, but so great at the same time, I laugh every time I look at the picture. (she’s the blonde, and he’s standing in front of her in the grey t-shirt and jeans. And if you don’t know who the heck I’m talking about go here.
And watch these:

He was also the host of the Tony’s this year:

So he’s kind of a triple threat: comedian, singer, and actor. And promotor of Old Spice. I’m not really sure what I would have done in that situation because I wouldn’t want to be rude either and he was obviously trying to shop without anyone noticing him. But still. SO. COOL. And funny.
You can also read Olivia’s blog and check out what she’s been up to in NYC as well.

But that wasn’t our only celebrity sighting of the day.

Hmmm. Yeah.


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