BBC News makes an appearance in a Bond film.

BBC News backdrops appearing in a scene from Skyfall
BBC News backdrops appearing in a scene from Skyfall

Whilst watching Skyfall at the cinema last Autumn, I smiled when I saw (oh so briefly) my backdrops for the BBC News appear in one of the scenes. The whole BBC News set, including these digital sets are due to be retired later this month so it is nice for them to have acquired a snippet of an extended life within a Bond film.

The Ten O’clock News is always shot in studio N6, but in these grabs it appears they shot into the right side corner of TC7 instead. Both studios are located at Television Centre, but TC7 was only usually used for the six o’clock news bulletins and so this is most probably a daytime version of the backdrop passing itself off as a night time version. Aside from the screens in TC7 not being as well calibrated as those in N6, this incarnation of the daytime version was never as rich as the night version in my opinion, so it doesn’t look quite as good as it might have done, but I can live with that.

BBC TenO'clock News backdrops appear in Skyfall
BBC Ten O’Clock News (but with Six O’Clock News backdrops) appears in Skyfall

For more information on these digital backdrops, visit my company’s website – lightwell

Christmas for Breakfast


Whilst working through the archives I came across a batch of  grabs from the very first in-studio test for BBC Breakfast back in November 2008. Even though this was only the first test, I had prepared not only night, dawn and morning daylight scenarios but also a full range of seasons and a snowy christmas version complete with decorated trees.

Eventually, we narrowed our focus down to the dawn light option with low sun angle and sky ablaze with colour. The winter option was also dropped and we proceeded with a summer and autumn version for the seasons, though I don’t recall ever seeing the autumn version being used. It would have been great to really go to town on producing a full blown winter wonderland scene but unfortunately, this fairly quick paint-over has been the closest I have managed to get so far.

The interior scene at this early stage was a deliberately re-purposed version of the main news backdrop. The buildings in the background are also much larger in scale than the final version which ended up approximately 75% painted rather completely photomontage as here. The photography of buildings in this and the final version came from the rooftops of multi storey car parks within Nottingham. I always find it ironic that in the cut and paste from the final BBC Breakfast backdrop performed by East Midlands Today to create their studio backdrop, they replaced my photography of Nottingham with….a photograph of Nottingham.