There’s a great little production-related bit on YouTube from Conan O’Brian. He decided he should punch his own show and told his director to kick back, relax and grab a sandwich.
Having directed multi-camera productions, I know there’s quite a bit more than just punching between camera 1 and camera 2. So it is funny to see Conan try to make a mockery of switching a live show, while at the same time, admit that it’s pretty hard.
Conan Makes fun of his director and the way he snaps his fingers to call a shot. It’s a timing thing, I understand, but I’ve worked on simpler shoots (corporate, live to tape) where, if you can snap your fingers… you can just as well push the button yourself. :)
Here’s the clip. Have fun!
Admittedly, it’s easier to punch a live show on a Ross than an Extron, but Conan only had 6 cameras to worry about, and none of them ever changed their shot while Conan punched the show. No tape, no commercials, no need to direct the cameras to follow a guest, go to a 2-shot, MCU, etc.
All Conan had to do was hit 6 buttons. No calling or actual directing occurred.
Even so, Conan admits:
Man this is tricky. Hold on. Hold on. Hold on.
I know it looks easy, but it’s really not.
Yes. My job is secure… from Conan at least. :)