Point TV Crew and Students Attend Sitcom Taping at Sony Pictures

Friday, September 21, 2012

Point Loma Nazarene University
Contact: Kalyn McMackin (760) 685-3312
Point TV: Channel 23 Public Relations Manager.
Advisor: Alan Hueth (619) 849-2358
Date: September 18, 2012
Written by: Kalyn McMackin

Point TV Crew and Students Attend Sitcom Taping at Sony Pictures
 Have you ever experienced a live taping of a television sitcom where the actors perform right before your eyes? Well, PLNU’s media communication students did just that on Tuesday, September 11, 2013, as they traveled to Los Angeles to see a live taping of CBS’s comedy Rules of Engagement. Students also toured Todd-AO’s sound facility in Santa Monica.

 Ten PLNU students got an up close and personal view into the production of a television sitcom taping and how soundtracks are created for films.  This included everything from live acting, script changes, camera operations and professional company interactions.

 Alan Hueth, professor of communication, said that the overall goal of a trip like this is meant to highlight just how close PLNU is to the film and television industry. Furthermore, students are given the chance to gain insight into the industry and then apply what they have learned to other courses.

 “We’re two hours away from where it’s happening in terms of film and TV,” said Hueth.  “We like to have students have a chance to see that kind of thing so that they can get a sense of connection with that industry and see just how close it is to us.”

 Gerrit Hoeks, a senior media communications major and Point TV’s manager said, “Observing the crew of "Rules of Engagement" made me really want to be a part of a sitcom at some point in my career.  It looked a lot of fun and it hardly looked like work.”

 The process of producing a sitcom takes six days, and the actual taping takes about four hours.  Hoeks explains that the wait can be well worth it.

 “If you're prepared for how long the process takes, then it's a lot of fun,” said Hoeks.  “Especially, if the warm-up guy is funny. It's been my experience that the warm-up guy is always twice as entertaining as the actual show you're watching.”

 Shelby Escobedo, a senior film studies major, transitioned from audience member to entertainment when she chose to participate in the studio audience dance off.
 “I honestly don't know why I decided to dance in front of the whole studio,” said Escobedo.  “I love to dance.  I dance in our TV studio all the time when no one is around.”
 The field trip was the first of its kind for Escobedo and she said that her experience is something she surely won’t forget. “While everyone was viewing the sitcom or listening to the commentator, I was watching the producers and crew work,” said Escobedo. “I was fascinated how they would make changes right on the spot if they didn't think it made the most laughs.  I couldn’t wait to be a part of this world.”

 In addition, students also had the privilege of touring Todd-AO, a post production sound studio for feature film and television. The studio has received Academy Awards for Saving Private Ryan, Black Hawk Down, Gladiator and most recently, The Bourne Ultimatum.

 “Touring Todd-AO was pretty cool,” said Hoeks. “I loved seeing just how much goes into the sound of a movie. You don't realize it when you're watching a movie but there is so much artistry in what you're hearing.”

 Overall, the sitcom taping and sound studio tour was both an entertaining and educational experience for students who are interested in entering the television and film industry.

For students interested in attending the next trip or for more information, contact Alan Hueth at AlanHueth@pointloma.edu.