Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Hello Dave,

I will honor Tony C's request to dredge up some space shot stories...
CBS/ NY requested CBS/W to send a Norelco PC-70 with tech to cover Walter Cronkite and space shot in color for the first time. Joe Tier informed me that I was to go to the Cape. Oh boy, several days of beach time and "whoop de doo" with the New York guys. Red Berridge (Bless his soul) was the video man. Bob Kania was the lighting man. On the day of the scheduled lift off, Walter was set up on the roof of the trailer with a wooden overhang.The gantry was in complete sunshine while Walter was being lit with artificial lights (2 k's, 750's, inkies, cigarette lighters, candles), until Walters eyes began to puddle up. "Hey ,Wash" the producer bellowed "what's wrong with YOUR camera" I tried to explain the difference in Kelvin
and panned the camera to a chip chart on the ground to prove the camera was set up properly. "Well, Wash, we didn't bring Walter all the way down here to shoot him sitting outside our trailer!, what are YOU going to do? I crossed my fingers behind my back and asked him to have the wooden overhang removed. We would not be able to see the results of this drastic solution for a day as the lift off was postponed. It was scheduled for early morning. The natural light filled in on Walter and conditions could not have been better. Quelle Luck. After the shoot was completed, I heard the FRIENDLY voice of the producer, "hey, Frank, maybe we could put W on a platform that rotates with the sun." I didn't have the heart to tell him that the gantry would would also have to rotate to maintain the liftoff shot with Walter in the foreground. Thus are careers made or broken.

Frank Novack