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Posts Tagged ‘Chris Jansing’

Covering a Once-Every-600-Years Story

Unprecedented in modern times, the Papal departure was covered by a thoroughly modern media. From the complex (multiple live cameras and locations) to the simple (Twitter.)

As Pope Benedict XVI began his final day as the leader of the Roman Catholic church, the broadcast networks produced special reports early this morning, while the cablers went into rolling coverage for much of the morning. CBS broke in for their special report at 10:44amET as Benedict departed for the final time. ABC and NBC followed at 10:53 and FOX at 11:02am. Vatican TV provided a multi-camera, multi-vehicle production which was carried by all the networks. From the Papal residence, through the Hills of Rome to an awaiting helicopter, and the short flight to Castel Gandolfo, cameras followed, anchors commented, priests analyzed. As Norah O’Donnell explained on CBS, “19 high definition cameras carefully choreographed so that we can see this historic moment.”

On cable news, we saw the pairing of Chris Cuomo and Erin Burnett, perhaps a sign of things to come for CNN mornings. (As the Papal departure was unfolding, Jeff Zucker was introducing the new EP of the morning show, veteran producer Jim Murphy). On MSNBC, the news fell in Chris Jansing‘s hour. A veteran of Papal coverage, Jansing will return to Rome for the Conclave. Fox News had Bill Hemmer and Martha MacCallum anchoring in New York while Fr. Jonathan Morris, who has been with Fox since shortly after Benedict became Pope, gave analysis from Rome.

By 11:50am, the broadcast networks had returned to regular programming and by Noon the cable networks moved on to the other news of the day.

And as he was being driven away from the Vatican for the final time, a Tweet was sent from @pontifex, the Pope’s Twitter account:

Before the Smoke Clears, Covering the Conclave

In the best of times, covering the election of a new Pope is no picnic. When it follows the first Papal resignation in nearly 600 years, you might need a few ‘Hail Mary’s.’

“There are so many moving parts to the story, you can’t really cover it all,” says CBS’s Allen Pizzey, based in Rome since 1989. “Access is limited, and the Vatican is a very secretive organization.”

Says NBC/MSNBC’s Chris Jansing: “It’s not like we know that Obama or Romney is going to be elected. It all happens behind closed doors. This is a complicated organization at a very complicated time, when many are calling for change.”

Pizzey, 66, a “non-religious” Anglican from Canada, and Jansing, 56, a devout Catholic from Ohio, were both shocked when Pope Benedict XVI announced last week that he would step down Feb. 28, citing ill health. Pizzey and Jansing had covered his election in 2005.

“Never a dull moment in the Roman Catholic Church,” Jansing says. “The idea of a Pope resigning was stunning. Popes don’t resign. It used to be they got sick, and it didn’t take very long before they died.. .. This represents a sea change in the way we view the office.”

In retrospect, Pizzey says, “the signs were there, but we didn’t read the symbolism the way we should have.” Based on the information he has since gathered, the Pope “decided some time ago that if he couldn’t do the job the way it should be done, he didn’t want to do it.”

Pizzey labels the decision as “a lesson for a lot of CEOs.”

Adding to the story’s difficulty factor, neither Pizzey nor Jansing covers the Vatican as a full-time beat. He travels to hot spots throughout the world; she anchors her own weekday show on MSNBC and reports for NBC News.

Part-time Pope-ologists “will never infiltrate the machinations of the Vatican,” Pizzey explains. He gets intel from European journalists on full-time Vatican duty. “It’s a relatively collegial atmosphere,” he says. “Not like something you’d experience in the States.”

By church canon, the conclave to elect the next Pope is supposed to begin March 15 in Rome. Given that Benedict is still living, however, it may start earlier, according to the Vatican. A total of 117 cardinals from around the world will gather.

To Jansing, a lifelong Catholic, the Vatican holds special significance. (Her first visit “was extremely emotional,” she recalls.) In 2004, she arranged for her mother and her sister, who was

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Who’s Going to Rome to Cover the Pope?

Fox News’s Shepard Smith will soon be on his way to Rome, reporting from the Vatican on the resignation of Benedict XVI and upcoming Conclave and election. Senior Foreign Affairs Correspondent Greg Palkot will be there tomorrow while Amy Kellogg should be on the ground by this afternoon. Smith, Palkot and Kellogg all covered the death of Pope John Paul II and election of Benedict in 2005.

NBC News correspondent/MSNBC anchor Chris Jansing, who also covered the last Papal transition will be leaving this afternoon for several days of reporting/anchoring and will also cover the election of the next pope. In a Media Beat interview, Jansing told us covering the death of John Paul II and election of Benedict was the most fulfilling assignment of her career: “It was just an extraordinary global event and also had some personal meaning to me.” Jansing will join NBC Rome correspondent Claudio Lavagna already on scene. Richard Engel will also report.

CBS has Allen Pizzey in Rome and London correspondent Mark Phillips will be joining him.

“GMA” Weekend Anchor Dan Harris, along with David Wright, Jeffrey Kofman, and Nick Schifrin will be reporting from the Vatican. Wright covered the 2005 transition. ABC’s Cokie Roberts, whose mother served as the U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican, will provide a historical perspective.

CNN’s Rome-based correspondent Ben Wedeman will cover and will be joined by Jim Bitterman, Max Foster and Jose Levy for CNN en Español are all en route.

The Scoreboard: Sunday, December 30

25-54 demographic (Live +SD)

  • Total day: FNC: 132 | MSNBC: 132 | CNN: 104 | HLN: 113
  • Primetime: FNC: 105 | MSNBC: 92 | CNN: 112 | HLN: 94

5p: 6p: 7p: 8p: 9p: 10p: 11p: 12a:
































































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Connecticut School Shooting: Coverage Plans For This Evening

Credit: Shannon Hicks, The Newtown Bee

With the tragic shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, CT, the broadcast networks and cable news channels are changing up their plans tonight.

All three of the evening news anchors, Brian Williams, Diane Sawyer and Scott Pelley, will be anchoring from Connecticut tonight.

“The CBS Evening News” will expand to one-hour, and CBS will air a one-hour special report at 10 PM ET. “ABC World News” will also be one-hour, and ABC will be pre-empting Barbara Walters‘ interview with President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama for a special on the shooting, with Sawyer and Chris Cuomo anchoring from CT. There will also be a special edition of “Nightline” with Cynthia McFadden anchoring from CT. “NBC Nightly News” will also be an hour, and “Dateline” will be pre-empting its holiday special for a report on the shooting at 10 PM.

On cable news tonight, the shooting will be the big story, if not the exclusive one.

MSNBC will be sticking with its normal lineup of hosts, with the shooting expected to be the primary story. Chris Jansing will host the 10pmET hour live from Newtown.

CNN will also be staying with its normal lineup, though the 10 PM edition of “AC360″ will be live instead of taped. With Erin Burnett in Afghanistan, Ashleigh Banfield will fill-in at 7 PM.  ”Piers Morgan Tonight” will be discussing the latest regarding the shooting, as well as gun control. Banfield will also anchor at 11 PM.

Fox News is pre-empting “The Five,” instead having Jon Scott anchor the hour. Bill Hemmer will anchor at 7 PM from CT.  ”The O’Reilly Factor” and “Hannity” will be live instead of on tape, and will be talking about the shooting, and “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren” will originate from Connecticut and air from 10PM-midnight. In addition tonight’s edition of “Red Eye” is being pre-empted.

We will update this item as we get more information on coverage.

MSNBC’s Election Night Plans

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and Chris Matthews anchor the network’s election night coverage beginning at 6pmET Tuesday, along with Rev. Al Sharpton, Lawrence O’Donnell, Ed Schultz, and Steve Schmidt from New York City. Chuck Todd focuses on the battleground states and Tamron Hall provides exit poll results. Melissa Harris-Perry will contribute from Obama campaign headquarters in Chicago and Chris Jansing will report from Romney headquarters in Boston.

MSNBC’s coverage begins way too early on Tuesday morning, with “Way Too Early” at 5:30amET, then “Morning Joe” and the rest of the dayside schedule devoted to the election until a special “Hardball” at 5pmET.

Much more after the jump…

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MSNBC Sticks With Primetime Lineup, Going Live Overnight

MSNBC will stick with its normal primetime lineup of “The Ed Show,” Rachel Maddow and “The Last Word” tonight, and will add live overnight coverage from 11 PM to 5 AM, primarily anchored by Chris Jansing. MSNBC will be taking advantage of its network news and Weather Channel siblings to provide coverage. “Way Too Early” will pick up coverage at 5:30 AM.

“We’ll be using the extraordinary resources of the NBC News Group including our friends with NBC News and the Weather Channel to help with our coverage,” said a network statement.

O’Donnell quipped about his hurricane coverage on Twitter earlier:


Bill O’Reilly Loves ‘Lincoln’: ‘You Know You’re Gonna Win Best Picture’

Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly gives an enthusiastic two thumbs up for “Lincoln,” the new Steven Spielberg film which documents the final few months of the Civil War as Abraham Lincoln tries to get the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery through the House of Representatives.

TVNewser attended the screening and a Q&A with Spielberg, Daniel Day-Lewis, who plays Lincoln, and screenwriter Tony Kushner moderated by TIME’s Rick Stengel. Stengel called first on O’Reilly who asked Day-Lewis how long it took to prepare for the role. “It took a year,” Day-Lewis says. “It seemed preposterous at first … growing up in Southeast London” to play the 16th president of the United States.

O’Reilly then gave his seal of approval: “You know you’re going to win Best Picture.” Then, to Day-Lewis, “and you’re going to win Best Actor.” And to Spielberg: “And you’re going to win Best Director and [Tommy Lee] Jones is going to win Best Supporting Actor.” Jones plays “Radical Republican” Pennsylvania Congressman Thaddeus Stevens.

Before the screening we had a chance to talk with O’Reilly, author of “Killing Lincoln” on its 55th week on the New York Times Best-Sellers list, this week at No. 5. His “Killing Kennedy” is No. 1 on the list for the second straight week.

We asked the Fox News star if he was excited by the news that FNC chairman and CEO Roger Ailes had signed on for another four years. “Excited? We’d be shocked if he hadn’t,” said O’Reilly.

Other notable tvnewsers at the event, “60 Minutes” correspondent Lesley Stahl, who had a revealing feature on Spielberg last Sunday, “CBS This Morning’s” Gayle King, Charlie Rose, and EP Chris Licht. MSNBC’s Chris Jansing and Lawrence O’Donnell, who ducked out during the Q&A to make it back to 30 Rock for his 10pm show. CNN execs Mark Whitaker, Ken Jautz and Bart Feder and ABC’s “This Week” EP Sandy Cannold.

And, after an early morning co-hosting “GMA,” Oprah Winfrey also attended. She gave a bear hug to Kushner. Then, exiting the theater — appropriately at the Loews Lincoln Square on the Upper

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MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts Weds

MSNBC anchor Thomas Roberts was married to longtime partner Patrick Abner in New York over the weekend. The ceremony and reception was held at the Gansevoort Park Avenue rooftop, with California Lt. Governor (and Current TV host) Gavin Newsom officiating.

Not surprisingly, there were a lot of boldface names in attendance. MSNBC president Phil Griffin, executive editor Yvette Miley, VP Elena Nachmanoff  and anchors Tamron Hall and Chris Jansing were there, as were CNNers Don Lemon, Sara Sidner, Holly Firfer and Asieh Namdar. Other guests included “Good Morning America”‘s Sam Champion, former talk show host Nate Berkus, reality host Carson Kressley, former MSNBC anchor Contessa Brewer and Roberts’ agent, Rick Ramage.

You can check out a slideshow of photos from the wedding here.

Mitt Romney Also Sitting Down With NBC News For Pre-Olympics Interview

Presumptive GOP Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney isn’t limiting his appearances to cable news this week. Romney will sit down with “NBC Nightly News” anchor Brian Williams tomorrow, with the interview to air on Wednesday’s “Nightly.”

The interview will be conducted at the Tower of London, two days before Romney attends the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games, which NBC is broadcasting.  Williams will anchor tonight’s broadcast, before flying to London overnight.

On Thursday, “Rock Center” will dedicate its entire hour to the Olympics, and will feature previews of the games from Tamron Hall, Meredith Vieira and Tom Brokaw.

Also in the NBC family: “Today’s” Matt Lauer began broadcasting from London Monday. MSNBC’s Willie Geist is there too, where he will anchor his MSNBC show as well as coverage on NBC Sports Network. And MSNBC anchor/NBC News correspondent Chris Jansing is on her way to London. Until yesterday, she was in Aurora, CO covering the aftermath of the movie theater shootings.