Linda Ellerbee

Journalist


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In her three-hour Archive interview, noted journalist Linda Ellerbee talks about her beginnings as a writer, who transitioned to working as an on-air correspondent in local news. She discusses moving to network television, working on such programs as Weekend and The NBC Nightly News. She then discusses the formation of her production company Lucky Duck Productions, and its keystone news series for kids Nick News. Throughout the interview Ellerbee discusses the state of the news industry as well as her philosophy about how news should be covered on television. Karen Herman conducted the interview in New York, NY on June 9, 2010.

"Even at age 10 it was fairly clear to me that if the Soviet Union dropped a hydrogen bomb on us, climbing under my little wooden desk and putting my hands over my head wasn't going to help. I spent a lot of time afraid of what's going to happen because I would see these images on television of Khrushchev pounding his shoe at the UN and the tests of the bombs that were being conducted, and I would go to bed terrified. No one talked to me about this. My parents didn't talk to me about what I was watching, my school didn't talk to me, no one in the church talked to me, certainly no one on television addressed my fears as a kid of the news that I was seeing. Don't you think I didn't think about that years later when we went to start Nick News."

Highlights
Journalist Linda Ellerbee on her failed attempt to get footage of the hostages' return to the U.S.
05:24
Linda Ellerbee on Nick News' coverage of 9/11
02:58
Linda Ellerbee on the business of television news
05:04
Linda Ellerbee on how her childhood view of television influenced her later work on Nick News
03:34
Linda Ellerbee on the first TV news story she ever covered, Steven Spielberg's filming of Sugarland Express
01:39
Linda Ellerbee on how women were treated in the television industry early in her career; the paternalism that existed at the time; and the double standard when it came to dress codes for female reporters in Congress; and how this changed with the advent of cable television.
02:51
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On her early years, education and influences
On becoming a writer; on being hired and fired by AP 
On her first job in television at KHOU; on learning how to be an on-air reporter; on moving to WCBS New York 

Chapter 2

On working as a reporter for CBS, then NBC
On some of her exploits as a journalist (at the 1976 Democratic Convention; on the release of the Iran hostages)
On becoming a network news anchor; on the business of television news
On playing herself; on starting Lucky Duck Productions

Chapter 3

On some of the stories she covered for NBC News 
On Nick News
On the importance of working; on Lucky Duck Productions; on the power of television; on her advice to aspiring news professionals; on how she would like to be remembered
Shows

Nick News

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Linda Ellerbee on how her childhood view of television influenced her later work on Nick News
03:34
Linda Ellerbee on the genesis, philosophy, and coverage of Nick News
35:09

Today

View Show Page
Linda Ellerbee on co-hosting Today for a week (as a tryout)
02:35
Topics

9/11

View Topic
Linda Ellerbee on Nick News' coverage of 9/11
02:58

Iran Hostage Crisis

View Topic
Journalist Linda Ellerbee on her failed attempt to get footage of the hostages' return to the U.S.
05:24

Television and the Presidency

View Topic
Journalist Linda Ellerbee on a comical attempt to find out who the 1976 Democratic Vice-Presidential nominee would be
03:36

Women

View Topic
Linda Ellerbee on how women were treated in the television industry early in her career; the paternalism that existed at the time; and the double standard when it came to dress codes for female reporters in Congress; and how this changed with the advent of cable television.
04:57
Genres

Children's Programming

View Genre
Linda Ellerbee on how her childhood view of television influenced her later work on Nick News
03:34

News and Documentary

View Genre
Linda Ellerbee on the business of television news
05:04
People

Lloyd Dobyns

View Person Page
Linda Ellerbee on co-hosting Today for a week (as a tryout)
02:35

Steven Spielberg

View Person Page
Linda Ellerbee on the first TV news story she ever covered, Steven Spielberg's filming of Sugarland Express
01:39

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