Pay No Attention to the Man Behind the Curtain

Pay No Attention to the Man Behind the Curtain

By Allison Mazur

June 9, 2016

During my first week on study abroad, I was flipping through the television channels in my hotel room in Belfast when I came across a British talk show (or chat show as they’re called here). This show happened to be Loose Women, which is essentially the British version of The View.

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Q: How many people can we fit on a couch? A: 10

Today we got the amazing opportunity to visit iTV, one of the UK’s major television channels, and go behind the scenes of Loose Women. We entered the set of the show, which I thought would be one room with one set. Wow, was I wrong. There was the sofa set in the middle of the room, a kitchen set on the left, a faux window and bookshelf set on the right, and a set with eight televisions on the back wall. This allows the program to shoot various segments but all on one set.

The studio had six cameras on set which were able to move around the whole room and cover anything and everything that was going on. We were allowed to try them out and practice our DP (Director of Photography) skills. It took me back to my high school film classes when I had to shoot videos in our small TV station.

Some of the cooler things to note from visiting a TV station:

1. Their windows have a special film on them so you can switch the camera settings as to not have the frame overexposed when filming in front of a window. Essentially the camera settings and window film act as polarized sunglasses!

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Look at that rainbow glare – polarized film!

2. Television, like most media, only show you what they want you to see. In this room of four sets, you’re only showed a small tight shot. You don’t get to see what’s going on behind the counter of the kitchen (it’s a mess, honestly). Nor do you see the box on the coffee table that has a sign reminding guests and hosts to silence their phones. Nothing on TV is really as it seems; everything is manicured and set up and shot to show you what they want you to see.

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