Originally Posted by joel.jackson
There are reports (http://www.mediabistro.com/tvnewser/...ting_52283.asp
) Steve Capus, executive producer of "NBC Nightly News", announced in a recent internal meeting NBC Nightly News will go HD in March, with HD field cameras coming in 2008. This appears to have been confirmed by NBC itself (http://www.tvweek.com/page.cms?pageId=578
This marks the first time a major nightly American newscast will shift production to HD. As much network news content is provided by local affiliates, of which roughly 98% are still producing in SD, I think NBC will find it challenging to put together a complete HD presentation, so this could put increased pressure on NBC affiliates to upgrade their local newscasts to HD. As well, this could increase pressure on the other network news operations.
Considering that just about everything else produced live in 30 Rock is in HD now, it's not a stretch to change the Brian Williams show to HD. The biggest problem is not the production of the show itself since they have plenty of experience now doing the Today Show for 3 hours a day, every day. The biggest problem will be handling the field content...virtually all of it will likely be 480i and hopefully that will be 16:9 when possible. But in far off places and war zones, that may not yet be possible. What would be nice to see is HD cameras in regional bureaus like L.A. or Washington DC which often are used for reports or talking head commentary. HD cams in regular field reporting locations like the White House or Pentagon would be nice if they could pull it off.
After that, the news division could turn their sights to Dateline. Since much of that show is shot with field cams days or weeks earlier and edited, you could do a lot of that show in HD. And finally there's Meet the Press. If memory serves me correctly, I think the set for that show was done for HD way back in the late '90s when the local DC NBC affiliate was doing HD testing. Ironically, the show itself has never been in HD. If it were updated to HD, I'm sure they would probably ditch the current "HD" set for another one.
Of course the biggest problem for all of this is cost. With GE desperate to cut costs across the board with NBC Universal, this could be the biggest challenge for doing all their news shows in HD. If equipment for some of the production of these shows was scheduled to be replaced and updated anyway, then the overall cost of the project would be less.