ABC News updates anchor desk, shifts ‘WNN’

ABC News switched to a new anchor desk in its main news studio in New York in late October 2019.

The anchor desk, which is in one of the primary studios at ABC News’ Lincoln Square headquarters, is used on the network’s flagship “World News Tonight,” overnight newscast “World News Now,”  and select editions of the Sunday political affairs program “This Week” as well as select special reports.

The new anchor desk retains the L-shape of the old one but eliminates the lightboxes on the ends and corner in favor of a seamless, wraparound LED ribbon.

Previously, the front and side of the desk used low bezel video panels framed by metallic elements.

The L-shape of both desks allows the network to primarily shoot “World News Tonight” anchor David Muir straight on against the massive curved video wall in the space, while “World News Now” is shot from cameras pointed at the other part of the “L,” putting those anchors in front of a small working newsroom.

The old desk with the seam between the two video panels visible.

Meanwhile, “World News Now” switched to the new desk as well and continued to shoot the same way — but then switched to using the studio’s video wall to feed a video loop of the newsroom behind the anchors, who now sit on the side of the desk Muir normally uses.

It’s not immediately clear if this setup is permanent or a temporary measure while updates are made.

The video wall in the studio was upgraded to in 2018 after a temporary one was installed to cover construction.

In 2018, ABC parent Disney announced it had sold the network’s longtime home, which includes this studio, and plans to move most New York City operations to 4 Hudson Square. 

As part of the sale, Disney leased back the space for five years while the building, which is planned to be 19 floors, is built.

Hudson Square is not to be confused with Hudson Yards, the mixed use development CNN moved to earlier this year.