—Here at “The Daily Show
with Jon Stewart” we rely heavily on a
playout system for producing the show. We
need to add over-the-shoulder graphics,
multi-box frames for chromakey remotes,
cued lower-thirds and custom animations
that interact with show dialogue. The way
that our graphics are controlled on cue has
become an integral part of the program.
Earlier this year, we decided to replace
our existing graphics system as it just
wasn’t up to the increasingly more sophisticated
requirements that developed. We
evaluated products from several vendors,
but it was clear early on that ChyronHego
offered everything we were looking for.
We chose their Mosaic XL processing
engine (server) running ChyronHego Lyric
PRO real-time and scriptless graphics creation
application software. We did some
initial tests and trained on the new system
for about two weeks, before taking it live.
Such time-critical productions as “The
Daily Show” require that I access or create
graphics on the fly. The Mosaic helps me do
this by providing tightly integrated authoring
via ChyronHego’s Lyric PRO application.
This lets me simultaneously manipulate 3D
objects, 2D and 3D text, logos, and movie
objects without compromise, all in real-time.
In addition to traditional over-the-shoulder
boxes, the system is used to create pre-built
animation templates into which we
embed a director’s cue. This allows them
to simply call up the cue and the animation
automatically begins playing. We used
to have to feed out animations on tape and
these had to be timed to Jon Stewart’s dialogue.
As you can imagine this was somewhat
difficult. Now, with the ChyronHego
system this is a piece of cake.
Another big reason we went with ChyronHego
is that we didn’t want the technology
to get in the way of creativity. The
new system allows us to focus on our vision,
not the tools required to achieve it.
SPEEDS UP PRODUCTIVITY
The system has also helped to make
things more efficient, allowing our production
work to run more smoothly. I typically
get my assignment for graphics around
noon on show day, with the rehearsal going
at 4:00 p.m. Following the rehearsal, there’s
usually some script tweaking and then we
shoot the show in front of a live audience
at 6:15. Many of our graphics elements have
been pre-built days before, but it seems
there’s always a last minute change or two
and that’s where the ability to make such
changes on the fly really shines.
Once our graphics created in Lyric software
are ready to go, they’re stored on the
Mosaic XL system and played out on cue.
Everything runs like clockwork.
The new ChyronHego system has really
made a difference in how we do things. I
can’t wait to use it for the congressional
elections coming up later this year.
Michael Hogan has served as art director
at “The Daily Show” since 2006. He
may be contacted at email@example.com.
For additional information, contact
ChyronHego at 631-845-2000 or visit