Opening ceremony set for Friday, July 23, live on NBC
It will be a summer of firsts for Mike Tirico and the NBC Olympics primetime show beginning in July in Tokyo.
Tirico, who makes his debut as the Summer Olympics primetime host, will anchor the show outdoors from a fifth-floor deck with a panoramic view of the Tokyo skyline, highlighted by the landmark Rainbow Bridge. The location marks the first time the host of NBC Olympics’ primetime presentation will anchor from outdoors (NBC’s first Olympics was the 1964 Tokyo Games).
“We are excited to bring the energy of this vibrant host city to our primetime audience each night as Mike opens the show and interviews the stars of the Games from a spectacular vantage point,” said Molly Solomon, executive producer and president, NBC Olympics production.
After serving as a daytime host from an open-air set on Copacabana Beach at the 2016 Rio Olympics and anchoring NBC Olympics’ primetime and late-night coverage of PyeongChang 2018 from an indoor, 3,500-square-foot geodesic dome studio, Tirico will host this summer’s primetime show in Tokyo’s morning and afternoon sunshine. (Tokyo is 13 hours ahead of Eastern Daylight Time.)
“Tokyo is one of the great cosmopolitan cities in the world. The chance to use the city as our daily setting will help bring our viewers back in the states even closer to the Olympic experience,” he said.
The outdoor presentation space, designed by NBC Olympics coordinating director Michael Sheehan and his team, will be enhanced by virtual graphics and an array of monitors. NBC’s “Today” will also broadcast from this NBC Olympics outdoor set each day.
Sheehan, who has been leading the NBC Sports studio design team since 2014, also created with his team a technology-laden indoor presentation space, which can project sweeping cityscape backdrops similar to those seen on NBC’s “Football Night in America” studio show, which he directs.
“We’re thrilled to be able to incorporate the live Tokyo cityscape into our most technologically advanced Olympics studio setup,” he said.
NBC Olympics’ studios in Tokyo are designed by award-winning set designer Bryan Higgason, and the team of New York based HD Studio. Lighting for the studios is designed by LDG led by Steve Brill, and all fabrication is done by blackwalnut. The entire scenic project is supervised by NBC Olympic Vice President of Production Operations Atila Ozkaplan.
In 101 days, NBC Olympics will provide unprecedented coverage of the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics on Friday, July 23, creating a full day of Olympic programming on NBC that culminates in what is always one of the most-watched nights in television with the primetime presentation of the ceremony.