Lights, Camera, and More Lights

By Chris Ariens 

To Frank Sinatra‘s New York, New York, Joe Scarborough welcomed viewers to MSNBC’s new Manhattan digs. Multiple cameras worked their way around the combined studio and assignment desk space showing off the 3rd floor facelift, which took just nine months to complete.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined Joe on the set to talk politics, local and national. In the planning stages, NBC execs toured Bloomberg TV’s east side headquarters to get some ideas of what they wanted to do with their space. The Mayor then cut the red ribbon to welcome MSNBC to New York.

The space sports two giant HD monitors, a video wall and a second floor catwalk for fronting news stories or weather. The studio walls and ceiling pillars change color based on the news. For Joe they remained yellow, until Mika Brzezinski reported breaking news on the California wildfires, at which point they turned red.

NBC Weather Plus’ Jackie Meretsky worked the catwalk to deliver weather while MSNBC SVP Phil Griffin paid a visit to the set playing up the “under one roof” strategy of news gathering and delivery.

“The Today show is right downstairs and across the way, you have Brian [Williams] right there, we’re here, when anything happens it’s sort of a continuation. We get bigger audiences, obviously, with the network stuff. But we’re here. You break news. When NBC News has anything, you break it here first.”

See video of the first five minutes of Morning Joe here