Brokaw’s ‘first 50’: A look back at the sets he used

During this time, one of the other primary backgrounds was a monitor array with various video feeds visible behind the anchor.

While the set was upgraded over the years with a variety of changes.

The far left wall with the small rear projection screen was upgraded to a large rear projection cube wall built inside a wood toned wall.

This was used for the opening shot, with Brokaw standing for the top story.

This wall could also be used as an OTS element from the anchor desk when shot from a camera positioned at the far left side of the studio.

Another major change during this time was the installation of a printed graphic featuring a faux newsroom image flanked with gray angled columns.

During this period, the wood pillar and now faux monitor array were not used as a primary background element — instead only making appearances in wide shots.

Instead, most anchor desk one shots were shot off-axis against the newsroom dura, which occupied the space previously occupied by the world map background.

In 2007, the show moved to Studio 3C at NBC News headquarters in Rockefeller Center. 

That studio space, which no longer exists as it did then, housed a high tech set that combined multiple rear projection screens and cubes to form the majority of the set’s walls. 

The broadcast opened with Brokaw — and later Brian Williams — standing in front of the far right rear projection screen with topical graphics. That wall was positioned within a purple-blue wall and crowned with a large “NBC News” dimensional logo against a thick blue curved header element.

The anchor desk, which was on a wheeled riser, was typically not used or visible in the show’s open, was moved into the center of the studio for other segments, including ones that used the camera right RP as an OTS element. 

Set Design

NBC News

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During this time, the broadcast’s graphics were dominated with gold and purple color schemes with vertical light bursts.

Directly behind the anchor desk was a cube and rear projection “window” that typically featured a control room loop, but would also be changed out for topical graphics, such as for the broadcasts “NBC News In Depth” segment. 

The left and right sides of the control room loop were overlayed with animated text. On either side of these panels, meanwhile, solid walls featured monitor arrays that mirrored the look on the show’s previous set.

This entire back wall also featured the now signature angled columns with internal lighting and the set also included wide, wood-toned pillars with integrated monitors on the far sides.

It’s worth noting that after an absence of almost several years, the angled column design made a reappearance on the WNBC weather center that debuted in 2016.

Set Design


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Some screen captures courtesy TVArk.