George Itzhak: From Here To There
By Priya Khanolkar, Fusion Alumni Relations.
After graduating early in December of 2013, George Itzhak (UGFTV/TSOA, 2013) went straight to Sochi, Russia for the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games as a Production Assistant for NBC News. Today, George is the Associate Producer at NBC Nightly News. He was able to sit down with us and explain how he got from here to there.
Itzhak recalls first being inspired to become a TV news producer after a speaker from CBS came to talk to his Producing For TV class. While working as the Design Director in Fusion for many supportive years and an important E-Board member, he was also interning at The Today Show. After shooting and editing his thesis film during his senior year, he began interviewing for many different TV networks.
George was already interning at NBC News when he heard that NBC was hiring people to help cover the Olympics in Russia. Since George speaks Russian fluently, he interviewed for the position and was then sent to Russia for five weeks. George thought this was a wonderful first job because he could work in the field and be extremely active. He was able to not only work with producers but also set up and be a part of many interviews.
George’s first position at NBC News was as a desk assistant. Because of his shooting and editing skills, which he learned specifically in Sight & Sound: Documentary, Sight & Sound: Filmmaking, and Camera 1 at Tisch, he was able to quickly move up in his career. George’s work is not limited to TV though. When he has free time, he works on film projects as well. One project he is currently working on is a feature length documentary about Joanna Stingray, the American godmother of Russian rock music.
George has traveled all over the United States as well as the world for his job and has had a great time doing it. When asked what he would tell himself if he could go back in time and speak to his college self, he replied, “I would tell myself to really focus more on your technical skills and your craft. That’s your work and that’s your value at your job. You have to have both ambition as well as the technical skills you can learn. There will always be creative people out there. You have to be able to back it up though.” George loved his years at Tisch and loved his time at Fusion. He is thankful for everything he learned during his years at NYU.