It’s been a rough couple of weeks at ESPN. But there is some good news coming out of Bristol. After hosting the popular investigative sports news show Outside the Lines for 28 years, ESPN icon Bob Ley is getting a new permanent home in Digital Center 2. In addition to a new studio, OTL will also debut a graphics package tomorrow at 1 p.m. ET.
“ESPN has long sought after a home-base where Bob Ley can provide in-depth storytelling wrapped in a powerful visual language supported by inspiring photography and video,” said Dan Cunningham, creative sirector, ESPN Studio Design & Development.
“The best studios don’t just let you do your show. They don’t merely enhance your show. They are, instead, fundamental to the DNA of your show,” said executive producer, E:60 and Outside the Lines Andy Tennant. “The studio and sets have been fashioned to be the home of storytelling on ESPN for a long time.”
“Bob’s been here at ESPN since day three. To say that he’s seen it all isn’t hyperbole. It’s fact,” said David Sarosi, coordinating producer, Outside the Lines and E:60. “So when he turned to me and simply said ‘wow’ after a recent rehearsal in Studio Z, I knew just how excited and enthusiastic he was that Outside the Lines would be housed in an environment worthy of its stellar 28-year history.”
In addition to being the home for Outside the Lines Monday through Friday, Studio Z will become the stomping grounds for the new weekly E:60 that premieres today in the Sunday, 9 a.m. ET hour (in about 13 minutes).
The new space features:
- A 180-degree desk which emulates the circular theme throughout the studio and allows Ley to easily face different areas of the studio whether interviewing in-studio guests, turning to address a remote interview on a display screen or turning to speak to the viewer.
- A fixed main display and three different-sized movable displays that suspend from above the set and allow for a variety of compelling visuals to be displayed throughout the show.
- A camera on a track above that will surround the set and give the viewer a unique perspective.
- A wall with iconic sports memorabilia and awards set behind diffused glass and lit from behind.
- A “gallery” behind two glass doors where different visuals display the rich journalism history.