Women in Television: Al Jazeera News Anchor Richelle Carey

AL JAZEERA AMERICA'S RICHELLE CAREY
AL JAZEERA AMERICA’S RICHELLE CAREY
 

 

I remember flipping through cable network channels some time ago and I came across a station called Al Jazeera.  I remember thinking to myself that “a station like this seems to be bridging the gap between Western and Eastern World relations.”  My curiosity led me to find out more about this network and share it with our Reel Focus readers.  On this blog, I have teamed up with Richelle Carey, News Anchor at Al Jazeera America, who will give us insight into this new television station that launched in 2013. 

MC:  Richelle, Reel Focus thanks you for taking the opportunity to chat with our readers in this blog interview.  First of all, for those who are not aware of what Al Jazeera news is, tell them more about this station and what types of news programs are most popular for this station?

RC:  Thank you for inviting me to participate.  Well, Al Jazeera is an international news network that launched Al Jazeera America a little over a year ago. It was on honor on August 20th 2013 to co-host the first program seen on our air at 3pm ET that day, along with my colleague Antonio Mora. Al Jazeera America offers a variety of programming, including newscasts, documentaries, and news magazine shows. What they all have in common is a seriousness of purpose. There is no fluff. That’s not to say the content is boring – far from it. It is engaging, but it is not entertainment. Viewers deserve better. I’m not the ratings person, I focus on my job. I can say that the bosses tell me the weekend newscasts do well and I’m proud to be part of that team.

MC:  The show title is obviously Arabic.  Explain to readers why is it important to have such a show tying American news to Middle Eastern news?

RC:  Al Jazeera is an intimidating name to some because they don’t know what it means. So, let’s get that out of the way, first. It simply means “the peninsula” or “the island.” Now, it’s never a bad thing to have more voices in news. Because Al Jazeera is such a diverse, global company we have resources in parts of the world, other networks don’t. And even in places where all networks have resources, Al Jazeera America will look for those voices you won’t hear on other networks. So, for example, while all networks will cover what happens in the Middle East, on AJAM you will hear a variety of perspectives from those whose lives are actually affected, perspectives that you likely won’t hear on other networks. 

MC:  Women in Film and Television’s focus is, of course, women in film and television.  Richelle, share with our readers who are interested in anchoring for television why this station could be a good option for advancing their career.

RC:  It starts at the top. Al Jazeera America has several women in strong leadership roles. Our president, Kate O’Brian, and several VPs are women.  Also, one of the company’s first hires was Kim Bondy, the senior executive producer on our flagship show “America Tonight.” Kim is a trailblazer in this business. Seeing the senior leadership of the company take shape said to me…my voice will matter here. I hope it says the same to other women.

MC: Finally, how does Al Jazeera plan to strengthen and encourage viewership in the future, especially among women and young viewers?

RC:  That only comes by doing the work. That’s not empty marketing campaigns with nothing of substance behind them. That’s not pandering to viewers you don’t actually care about or try to understand. At Al Jazeera America, we put voices on TV you don’t see on other networks. Often, that’s women, people of color, and young people who don’t have fancy publicists getting them booked on cable TV all day, but have something dynamic to say.  Those voices, we believe, will bring in viewers. It won’t happen overnight, and ratings are what drives us, but it will happen.

 


About Richelle Carey

Richelle Carey is an anchor at Al Jazeera America, the new U.S. cable news channel available in Atlanta on Comcast Channel 107, AT&T Channel 1219, DirecTV Channel 347 and Dish Channel 215.  Prior to joining Al Jazeera America, Carey spent seven years as an anchor and correspondent for CNN in Atlanta. 

Prior to CNN, Carey was a weekday morning anchor for KMOV-TV in St. Louis and KVVU-TV in Las Vegas.

Carey is a strong advocate for girls and women and serves as vice president of the board of directors at Men Stopping Violence, an organization whose mission is to end violence against women and girls. She is also a former board member of the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta, one of the largest councils in the nation.

Carey attended both Smith College in Massachusetts and Baylor University in Texas. Her many journalism awards include an Emmy for consumer features reporting while in St. Louis and the “Emerging Journalist” award from the Houston Association of Black Journalists. 

Find her on Twitter at https://twitter.com/RichelleCarey and learn more about Al Jazeera America at http://america.aljazeera.com/

Photo courtesy of Richelle Carey.


 

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EDITORS’ FACE OFF – 87TH ANNUAL OSCAR PICKS

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Photo courtesy of http://yhoo.it/1DcLbhi.

Editors’ Collaboration Blog – Carletta Hurt & Melisha “Mel” Childs

The Academy Awards is a few weeks away and Women in Film and Television Atlanta would like to build momentum for our Oscar Party by providing our readers with fun blog posts leading up to the event. This blog post is called “Editors’ Face Off,” in which Melisha “Mel” Childs and Carletta Hurt, editors and bloggers for Women in Film and Television Atlanta, present our individual choices of who we think will win this year’s Academy Award. We hope that you too will play along and add your own commentary.
***Remember to mark your calendars for February 22 and join us at 6:00 pm dressed and ready to impress at Studio No. 7 for the Oscar watch party.

 

Best Motion Picture of the Year
CH: Selma
MC: American Sniper

Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
CH: Bradley Cooper, American Sniper
MC: Bradley Cooper, American Sniper

Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
CH: Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
MC: JK Simmons, Whiplash

Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
CH: Julianne Moore, Still Alice
MC: Julianne Moore, Still Alice

Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
CH: Meryl Streep, Into the Woods
MC: Meryl Streep, Into the Woods

Best Animated Feature Film of the Year
CH: How to Train Your Dragon 2
MC: Song of the Sea

Achievement in Cinematography
CH: The Grand Budapest Hotel
MC: Birdman

Achievement in Costume Design
CH: Maleficent
MC: Maleficent

Achievement in Directing
CH: Birdman
MC: Imitation Game

Best Documentary Feature
CH: CitizenFour
MC: Finding Vivian Maier

Documentary Short Subject
CH: White Earth
MC: Joanna

Achievement Film Editing
CH: American Sniper
MC: American Sniper

Best Foreign Language Film of the Year
CH: Ida
MC: Ida

Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling
CH: The Grand Budapest Hotel
MC: Guardians of the Galaxy

Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score)
CH: The Theory of Everything
MC: Mr. Turner

Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song)
CH: Glory
MC: Glory

Achievement in Production Design
CH: Interstellar
MC: Interstellar

Best Animated Short Film
CH: The Bigger Picture
MC: The Damn Keeper

Best Live Action Short Film
CH: The Phone Call
MC: The Phone Call

Achievement in Sound Editing
CH: Unbroken
MC: The Hobbit: The battle of the Five Armies

Achievement in Sound Mixing
CH: Unbroken
MC: Birdman

Achievement in Visual Effects
CH: X-Men: Days of Future Past
MC: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Adapted Screenplay
CH: American Sniper
MC: American Sniper

Original Screenplay
CH: Birdman
MC: Birdman

 


 

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A Night to Remember – Bob Cicherillo

Bob Cicherillo

 

The countdown is on. We are now 4 days away from one of the biggest events in television and you can be a part of it here in Atlanta.  Join WIFTA for the 2015 Oscar party and enjoy food, fun and games all in the company of great hosts, friends, and fellow WIFTA members.  Not only will you have the opportunity to watch what’s going on in LA, live on the big screens, there will also be plenty of opportunities to network with some local phenomenal people.  One such phenomenal person is actor and writer Bob Cicherillo.

 

Bob Cicherillo is known by many for his body-building but he is not just all brawn.  He also flexes his mental muscles as a writer and is known for works such as I Love You, Man; Demons at the Door, The Last Rep and you may recognize his voice from the podcast Pro Bodybuilding Weekly with Dan Solomon.

 

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Top photo courtesy of Bob Cicherello.

Bottom photo courtesy of http://bit.ly/1vGJUcg

Still haven’t purchased your tickets?  Don’t miss the opportunity to be in great company on the biggest night in film and to show off your fashion sense on our red carpet.  Hurry and get your tickets at https://wiftaoscarpart.eventbrite.com and help us make this a night to remember!


 

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A Night to Remember – Beth Keener & Greer Howard

Beth Keener

 

Have you caught it yet?  Oscar fever that is.  It’s running rampant nationwide and it has made its way here to Atlanta.  We plan to “feed the fever” with food, fun and games at Studio No. 7 starting at 6 pm on Sunday, February 22.  Come on out and meet two more of our dynamic hosts that will help make Oscar night in Atlanta a night to remember.  Greer Howard

Beth Keener is a local reporter and actress known for her work on Vampire Diaries and One Tree HIll.  She is also known for Battle Los Angeles and Death Sentence.

 

Greer Howard is a reporter for the Atlanta Braves and is working on her latest project, The Atlanta Insiders.

 

 Still haven’t purchased your tickets?  Don’t miss the opportunity to be in great company on the biggest night in film and to show off your fashion sense on our red carpet.  Hurry and get your tickets at https://wiftaoscarpart.eventbrite.com and help us make this a night to remember!


 

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A Night Remembered in Atlanta

Oscars-2015
Photo courtesy of http://bit.ly/1DeEx6P.

 

On February 22, 2015, the 87th Annual Academy Awards aired on WSB-TV in Atlanta.  In support of film professionals who were nominated and awarded on this special night, Women in Film and Television Atlanta hosted an Oscar Party at Studio No. 7 in downtown Atlanta.  It was truly a night to remember and this is what I remembered. . .

DSC00930Our bartender provided us with some great drinks throughout the night. . .

 

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. . .many were engaged in conversation and enjoying the ambiance. . .

 

DSC00954. . .some were exchanging information and networking and really having fun doing so. . .

 

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. . .the red carpet show on TV kept some of us entertained. . .

 

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. . .while the actual awards ceremony kept the rest of us occupied as winners were announced at the Oscars. . .

 

 

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. . .let’s not forget about those Oscar trivia games that kept us guessing during commercial breaks. . .

 

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. . .and when games weren’t being played, we were moving and grooving to the talented musical crew. . .

 

DSC00986. . .still others were simply satisfied with looking good for the evening and indeed there were a lot of well-dressed, good-looking men and women at the event.

 

Did you miss out on all the fun we had?  Click here to see the video. 

 

Event photos by Mel.

Video courtesy of Angela Wingers of WingersMedia.com.


 

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Interview with Former CNN Anchorman Daniel Viotto

Photo credit - CNN
Photo credit – CNN

Sir Anthony Hopkins.  Denzel Washington.  Tom Cruise.  Will Smith.  These are top billing Hollywood actors that we love to watch on-screen either for their raw talent or sex appeal; or a little bit of both.  Being on television or on the big screen is not reserved for top billing actors; however.  There are some television personalities that are not traditional actors as we know it but still have a certain level of prestige for their career in television.

One such person is former CNN Espanol anchor Daniel Viotto.  Although Daniel is now retired from CNN, he is still in the reporting business.  He currently works as the digital content manager for a local Hispanic newspaper called Mundo Hispanico which is a subsidiary of the Atlanta Journal Constitution.  This week, Daniel will tell Reel Focus what it was like to be an anchorman for one of the most powerful international news shows in the world; and, what life is like after CNN.

 

Daniel thank you for joining us this week. A lot of Reel Focus readers are in film or television or are aspiring to be in film or television. Being a television anchor is a very important part of the television experience; therefore, tell our readers how you became an anchor for television.

 

If I were to say that becoming a TV anchor was destiny I would be lying. I would also be lying if I were to say that I was a born journalist. I will say that I have always been curious and concerned about communication among people and across cultures and languages.  I was motivated to become a journalist in order to explore human behavior, communication and emotions in depth. It is my personal belief that most of the amazing accomplishments and even the tragic events we have experienced have to do in one way or another with human communication [or miscommunication].  However, when we are able to communicate effectively with one another something amazing always happens–solidarity, space travel, peace, new discoveries, environmental protection, and justice are all possible when we communicate to share common human values instead of labeling groups of people as “this or that.”  These are some of the reasons that I became a journalist and decided not to pursue a career in architecture – although one day I still may [pursue an architecture degree].

After graduating from college in Mendoza, Argentina I worked for few years in radio and television.  However, I wanted more.  I wanted to travel to other countries and see beyond my immediate surroundings with my own eyes. I landed at LAX airport in Los Angeles in March 1991 and was greeted with a simple, spontaneous ceremony in which myself and my luggage were welcomed by a good friend who allowed me to stay in his house. This friend then put me in contact with people that eventually became good friends. In hindsight, I am deeply appreciative to all of them. I was a stranger and they opened their homes to me when I needed it the most. They are extraordinary, unforgettable people.

Soon after, I become a permanent resident by a program called Lottery of visas. I was lucky enough to win one of thousands of resident visas. A year later, I was an intern and then freelancer with Univision 34. A year after that, I signed my first contract with Telemundo 52 and worked under the remarkable and successful news director, Sandra Thomas, who believed in me and allowed me to join her team of field reporters.  Two years later, I was hired by CNN when they were launching CNN in Spanish for all Latin America viewers. I worked for CNN for 14 years until I decided to take a break from news and explore other options.

 

What was it like working for CNN?

 

Working for CNN was like being in the school of real life for me. It opened my eyes to a very complex and dynamic world.  I learned a great deal and became interconnected to human events and occurrences. While working as a news anchor, I also realized that not only politicians and world leaders have to fix the problems of the world; journalists too, can make a difference but we have a lot of work ahead of us to do.  I was part of an organization that proved over and over again its leadership in journalism. CNN continues to embrace high standards in journalism and CNN en Espanol keeps bringing people together all over the continent. I’m pretty sure I didn’t learn everything during my time at CNN and there is a lot more to come, but let me tell you, it was a great learning experience and such a journey to share.

 

How important is what you do as a journalist?

 

I became an anchor at a time when social media was conceived. At first it was entertaining and kind of senseless–yes senseless– that is until the platforms became the massive media phenomenon they are today. As social media grew, narcissism also grew, using these platforms to expose absolutely nothing but out of control ambition and a constant craving for reaffirmation by audiences. While we can use less of the narcissism, I am convinced that the world does need more leaders and less followers but journalists need to be involved in this process because at the end of the day we play a key role in communicating the people’s needs. The day journalism no longer delivers people’s message it will become obsolete.

 

What’s life like for you after CNN?

 

Life’s fantastic but boring in so many ways. I tasted freedom by leaving and becoming an entrepreneur. I took a much-needed break from listening to my producer in my ear every day or explaining to the news director why I said what I said the day before that made some people so angry.

I left anchoring and became part of the audience–a listener, a reader, a news consumer. For the first time, I was away from the energy of a newsroom. I was no longer addicted to the camera and I no longer had to pretend to know everything.

Working for CNN was exiting, challenging, fun and sometimes dangerous, but after being away for 5 years, in retrospect, it looks even more fascinating. I do miss it, though.

8/11/2008 Atlanta, Ga. Names: Daniel Viotto Anchor, CNN en Espanol Photo: Mark Hill/CNN en Espanol

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Follow Women in Film and Television Atlanta on Twitter @wiftAtlanta

 


 

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Advanced Training for Showbiz Budgeting and Actualization – Version 9 Webinar

Ready to budget your next project?  Need help actualizing your current television show or film? 
 
Women in Film & Television Atlanta is proud to announce a series of webinars and classes designed to help you learn two of the most popular budgeting software programs around! 
 
What you will learn: 

  • Setup
  • Creating your Budget – including entering information, vendor database, import/export
  • Customizing your Template
  • Entering Fringes, Subgroups, Tax Incentives, Currencies, Vendor Database, Import/Export, Invoice Receipt, File Attachments
  • Actualization – including purchase orders, petty cash/showbiz PC envelope, detail browser, calendar, and printing reports
  • Merging
  • Reports
  • Q&A

 


Showbiz Timecards Webinar

Ready to budget your next project?  Need help actualizing your current television show or film? 
 
Women in Film & Television Atlanta is proud to announce a series of webinars and classes designed to help you learn two of the most popular budgeting software programs around! 
 
What you will learn: 
  • Setup
  • Break both union & non-union timecards
*Download will be available at the beginning of the class.
 

Learn How to Use Movie Magic Budgeting

Ready to budget your next project?  Need help actualizing your current television show or film?
Women in Film & Television Atlanta is proud to announce a series of webinars and classes designed to help you learn two of the most popular budgeting software programs around! 
 

Learn How to Use Movie Magic Budgeting

With Production Accountant, Cheryl Jenkins & UPM, Dominic Cancilla

 

Cheryl Jenkins, Production Accountant

Cheryl Jenkins is the principal and founding partner of Atlanta-based Production Accounting and Crew Services (PACS). Founded in 2010, PACS was launched by Jenkins to fill a growing need in the burgeoning film and television industry throughout the state of Georgia – sourcing and placing qualified production accountants with entertainment production companies doing business locally.

PACS is able to bill itself as “Atlanta-based, Hollywood-trained” because of Jenkins’ wealth of experience and leading the production accounting units of major Los Angeles-area based television and film production companies and studios, including OWN, NBC/Universal, New Line Television, VH-1, MTV, BET, Fox Television, Comedy Central, Cartoon Network, CW Affiliates, IFC and others in top markets such as Atlanta, Houston, and New York.

Dominic Cancilla, Producer/Unit Production Manager

Producer/Unit Production Manager Dominic Cancilla began his career in 1989 as a producer/ director of medical marketing and teaching videos. Segueing through news magazine programs and commercial production, he eventually landed in the feature film world following his passion. He rose quickly through the ranks as a production coordinator, supervisor, and eventually UPM, line producer and producer. Dominic is credited with over 30 films, ranging from studio hits to Sundance Festival independents. Some of his credits include Robert Rodriguez’s actioner “Machete”, starring Danny Trejo, Robert DeNiro, and Jessica Alba, and it’s sequel, “Machete Kills”, with Danny Trejo, Mel Gibson, and Amber Heard; “Get The Gringo”, a dark action comedy starring Mel Gibson; “Angels Sing”, a Christmas holiday movie with Harry Connick, Jr., Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson; the Emmy nominated Lifetime re- make of Horton Foote’s Academy Award winning “Trip To Bountiful”; and the soon to be released “Steel Country”, from Academy Award winning producer Gareth Unwin (“The King’s Speech”). Currently, Dominic is working as the UPM on the new SYFY Channel series “Superstition”, starring Mario Van Peebles and Robinne Lee. 

 

$20 – guests (per session) 
FREE for Members​