Jacko coverage gets creative

Broadcasters
are drawing on their creative resources to portray the drama of the
Michael Jackson trial, as cameras are banned from the court, writes
Caitlin Pike.

ITV News has created a 3D court room, featuring key figures in the trial.

Craig
Oliver, assistant editor of ITV News said: “The technology gets better
and better – we also have a virtual reality Neverland which, being
Jackson’s home, is key to the trial.

We’ve designed it based on pieces of film and a range of materials that give a picture of what the ranch is like.

Reporter Romilly Weeks will be moving around in there.

“Our
award-winning courtroom graphics will illustrate what has happened in
the trial each day. We are using more of the courtroom and virtual
reality Neverland in the 6.30 bulletin, purely because of the
demographics of that programme.”

Sky News has chosen to use daily
courtroom reconstructions which they pioneered during the Hutton
Inquiry in 2003. Actors will read from courtroom transcripts. Sky is
yet to confirm who will be cast in the role of Michael Jackson.

Five
News has an exclusive deal with Court TV’s investigative reporter Diane
Dimond who will report live from the trial. Chris Shaw, Five’s senior
programme controller for news and current affairs, said: “Diane has
consistently proven to be leader of the press pack in the Jackson case
and she’ll be lending her expertise to Five News throughout this
trial.” Dimond will also be an analyst for NBC’s Today show.

Oliver
added that ITV journalists were under great pressure to report the
trial because of the time difference between California and the UK.
“The location of this trial is an extra challenge.

The time
difference means there will only have been an hour of proceedings
before we are on air at 6.30pm in the UK. The fact that this case is
not being shown live in the US makes it that much more difficult to
report.”

‘ Television journalist Martin Bashir will testify at
the trial after his documentary, broadcast on ITV 1 earlier this year
and watched by more than 15 million, contained material relating to
allegations in the case.

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