Al Roker uses MSNBC space to join Lester Holt for ‘Nightly’ weather update

NBC Nightly News” anchor Lester Holt was in Washington, D.C. Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, even as winter weather was dominating headlines so the network opted to have Al Roker join the broadcast from Studio 3A, normally home of MSNBC programming.

Since “Nightly” moved to Studio 1A in September 2021, weather segments would typically feature Al Roker joining Holt in studio using the video wall normally used for Holt’s OTS style shots, a setup that allows a toss shot between the two (there were some instances where Roker joined from home during the omicron coronavirus surge).

During these segments, Roker uses the flat video wall first installed for NBC’s 2020 election coverage and then moved into its current position shortly after. 

The video wall remained in the same position when the studio was updated in September 2021, though it gained a glossy white surround with color changing accent and is now heavily used on both “Today” and during for most anchor intros during “Nightly.”

On Feb. 16, however, Holt was in Studio N5 in Washington, using its video wall alcove to recreate the show’s NYC look like it did Feb. 11, 2022.

Presumably to avoid having to fire up Studio 1A for just a brief weather update, Roker instead delivered his Feb. 16 update from the wild monitor cart in Studio 3A place in front of the skeleton archway in front of the large sliding walls that lead to a green screen space.

The segment utilized the walk and wander floating camera effect but remains fairly tight, not showing much of the studio.

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During the 6:30 p.m. eastern “Nightly” broadcast, MSNBC is airing “The Beat,” which is often produced from Studio 4E, though it appeared Ari Melber was either anchoring remotely or in one of the network’s insert studios Feb. 16.

Roker has used Studio 3A previously to join Holt on “Nightly” under its old design, including turning part of it into a severe weather center. Notably, at the time, “Nightly” was still using the space formerly known as Studio 3C, which is next door to 3A and connected through glass doors.

During that time, Roker would also join Holt in 3C, using the “video tower” for his maps and graphics. 

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