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June 24th, 2009
07:13 PM ET

From London to Paris – to Roxana Saberi


Photojournalist Beau Molloy shoots b-roll of Roxana by the Eiffel Tower.


Roxana Saberi holds a memorial event in front of the Eiffel Tower to mark 1 year in prison for her former cellmate Silva Harotonian.

Brittany Harris
AC 60º Producer

Could I zip from London to Paris to produce Anderson's interview with Roxana Saberi, the Iranian-American journalist recently released from a Tehran prison?

That's the question I got from New York last week, and that's how I came to be aboard the 9:26am Eurostar this morning, a high-speed train that makes the trip from London to Paris in just over two hours. Photojournalist Beau Molloy, engineer Alex Platt and I headed straight to a press conference Roxana was holding.

Saberi was calling attention to her former cellmate in Iran, Silva Harotonian, who marks one year in prison today. Afterward, we shot a ceremonial event and video of Roxanna in front of the Eiffel Tower video, as Anderson made his way from vacation to Paris to interview her the next morning.

Now we're getting settled at the Paris bureau, setting up Anderson's live shot for tonight and deciding what to order for dinner. (I wanted something authentically French but got overruled by sushi fans). It's going to be a beautiful shot tonight... from the Paris bureau's excellent location right on the Champs Elysees, with the Arc de Triomphe lit up behind Anderson.

And we have lots of caffeine on hand, since AC360 is on at 4am Paris time... As soon as we finish tonight's live shot, we'll begin to set up for the interview with Roxana. Sleep is less important when work is so exciting, and I figure we can always nap on the Eurostar on the way home.


Filed under: 360° Interview • 360° Radar • Iran
soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. drt

    it is interesting that the US still buys oil from countries that do this stuff.. we still trade with Iran as they deny the right to a free press to their people- jail reporters, and then crush protests with brutal force. Again, you know killing Neda was a "mistake".. they meant to kill the "sister" of a terrorist- now that is a real excuse there.. good grounds for murder.

    Still.. we Americans dont get it..anyone thought about the fact that we actually pay these guys money to do this? yep.. we trade openly with Iran on all sorts of stuff.. not just oil- wonder how long the Ayatolah could stay in power if a few seemingly free countries just said "NO".. and quit all trade.. no more buying oil, no more manufactured good.. just full stop.

    Dont run around complaining about some poor girl held in prison by the very people you fund!

    June 25, 2009 at 10:50 am |
  2. ariadna theokopoulos

    Hi, Anderson,
    I love your independence. Whether it's Neda, the young Iranian woman killed while peacefully protesting in Iran, or Basem, the young Palestinian man killed while peacefully protesting at the Apartheid Wall near Bill,in, you're on it! Viewers have short attention span and sometimes get bored as they must have when you covered the 1500 killed by the IDF (or is it IOF?) in Gaza for days and days, but as an honest reporter you did what you felt was right.
    THAT's what makes you, guys, different from Faux News! That and the graphics.
    Kuddos.
    Ariadna

    June 25, 2009 at 10:26 am |
  3. Sarah, Canterbury UK

    Hi Brittany

    Tough life isn't it. Just keep out of the shops – the stores are seriously harmful to a girls credit card!!!

    I travel for work between London and Paris from time to time on Eurostar so I know how fantastic Paris is.

    Have a safe journey back and how lucky are you to catch up with AC !

    Kind regards

    Sarah

    June 25, 2009 at 9:42 am |
  4. Peter

    Wow!, here this lady ...Saberi ...was guilty of being in a country after her documents have expired and continuing to behave in a manner than a US citizen could not get away with outside a Federal Reserve Bank, and CNN is plastering her all over as if he was modeling for Vogue or something. How about political prisoners being held in US Prisons???

    June 25, 2009 at 8:33 am |
  5. Jackie Cole

    How exciting to be you. I have missed seeing Anderson on the tube the last couple of nights and was afraid he was on his way to Iran. Sad about the Governor, but he does not compare to Clinton at all. He really seem to be in love not lust.

    June 25, 2009 at 2:22 am |
  6. lisal -canada

    life is always more interesting when you don't limit yourself to a "9-to-5" mentality. i suspect that is one of the reasons the AC360 team seems to get so much accomplished.

    looking forward to the interview.

    June 25, 2009 at 12:52 am |
  7. Anthony Rivera-Cruz

    With all the coverage of the events in Iran, I wonder just what is the UN doing about this. Haven't even seen or heard anything? Are they just waiting or what??

    June 24, 2009 at 11:40 pm |
  8. Philoan Tran - Houston

    The Paris location is certainly making this assignment much more fun to do – however, you must get at least some bon pain and French chocolate for breakfast to get that Parisien flavor! The glass Pyramid in front of the Louvre is also very cool too for a backdrop.

    June 24, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  9. Jo Ann, North Royalton, Ohio

    I can't believe Anderson is in Paris tonight, my favorite European city! I am jealous, it is so beautiful and romantic! I wish he would do the show in front of La Pyramide du Louvre, it is so gorgeous at night!

    I will settle for La Tour Eiffel.

    June 24, 2009 at 9:22 pm |
  10. Sandra Robertson, GA

    I look forward to Anderson's interview with Roxana Saberi. She knows first-hand the oppression of the Iranian people. I pray for Roxana's friend and former cellmate, Silva Harotonian, and hope she will be released as well.

    My thoughts and prayers are also with Laura Ling and Euna Lee in North Korean prisons.

    God Bless them and keep them safe and may these governments have mercy on the innocent and see that they are released from prison.

    June 24, 2009 at 9:17 pm |
  11. Dave, SC native

    I'm really excited for the Roxana Saberi interview. It's obvious everyone on the 360 team is really pulling out all the stops for it.

    I remember Anderson once told David Letterman about being "arrested" for 3 days in Tehran when he was a scrappy kid working for those journalistic chops. I doubt his stay was anything like Ms. Saberi's. I hope something can be done for Silva Harotonian, as well. An entire year? That seems unbearable.

    June 24, 2009 at 9:13 pm |
  12. Lori from IL

    At least you can’t say your life is boring! Looking forward to tonight’s show with the Arc de Triomphe in the backgroung. The Champs Elysees is beautiful.

    I hope the interview with Roxanna Saberi goes well tomorrow. I’m really interested to hear what she has to say. Given what’s currently happening in Iran, she’s in a position to share a perspective few others can offer right now. Way to go Team 360 for securing this interview.

    Good luck to Anderson and the production team — after the events of last Thursday — luck has to be on your side!!

    June 24, 2009 at 9:08 pm |
  13. Eileen, Virginia

    Anderson,
    I am so glad you are doing this important interview. It is so important for the world to hear what Saberi has to say. I wear green every day to express my outrage at the brutal violence Iranian government is using against its own citizens.

    Our government must be measured in its response. But individuals around the world must not be silent. Any government that shoots and viciously beats its citizens to maintain their power is not legitimate. Anderson are their any oil companies doing business with Iran that could be targeted for a world wide boycott?

    Thanks for your excellent work!

    June 24, 2009 at 8:56 pm |
  14. Noel Anthony Haughey

    A great job from President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton for rescuing Roxana Saberi. Two effective leaders that know how to rescue people diplomatically without dropping bombs....

    June 24, 2009 at 8:37 pm |
  15. Jennifer - Michigan

    I look forward to tonight's live shots from the Champs Elysees. The Arc de Triomphe is so beautiful. Watch out for the driver's around there though – they sure do whip around it pretty good. And then, sushi – man! You guys got it made that's for sure!! I haven't had my sushi fix in quite some time now. Oh well – enjoy!

    June 24, 2009 at 8:30 pm |
  16. Lori from IL

    At least you can't say your life is boring! Looking forward to tonight's show with the Arc de Triomphe in the backgroung. The Champs Elysees is beautiful. (I guess if Anderson had to leave his vacation early - Paris is not a bad place to go.) I certainly enjoyed my trip to the City of Lights.

    I hope the interview with Roxanna Saberi goes well tomorrow. I'm really interested to hear what she has to say. (I've been following her story. Since she earned a master's degree from Northwestern University – Evanston,IL, the local media covered the story of her imprisonment in Iran and eventual release.) Given what's currently happening in Iran, she's in a position to share a perspective few others can offer right now. Way to go Team 360 for securing this interview.

    Good luck to Anderson and the production team - after the events of last Thursday - luck has to be on your side!!

    June 24, 2009 at 8:15 pm |
  17. susan - Midwest USA

    Best place if you are going to be up that late!

    Arent those high speed trains just the best! Even if you dont get a sleeping berth, they are fantastic. Much better than aeroflight – and for some distances about the same time (or less if you consider the security at some American airports). And, you end up right in the middle of the town/city you are traveling to. You dont need additional transport from the airport.

    I strongly advocate revitalizing US trains – but as high speed. (Magnetos would be real cool!) If people are willing to hop via Southwest, then high speed trains are not different. Oh, I take that back. You CAN get up and move about the cabin – that's some of the best part, just meeting other travelers and talking. And dont forget about dining cars – or just sharing food on the longer train trips!

    Gee. Do you think they can put photovoltaics on the cars too so that electricity might be generated simutaneously?

    June 24, 2009 at 8:03 pm |
  18. Maureen Olsen from Apple Valley, California

    Paris with Anderson, who was looking in my mind when I was dreaming.lol. On to the serious note sounds very interesting. I feel sad to say the least about the Iranian conflict. I'm afraid it is only going to get worse before getting better. I hope I'm wrong.

    June 24, 2009 at 7:58 pm |
  19. Isabel, Brazil

    Hello, Anderson!

    I look forward for interview.

    Roxana, after 4 months of being in a prison in Iran, should have much to say about the tyranny and the defendants in the country.

    This interview is unlosable!

    Difficulties with time zone?
    I understand! There is a time of year that for I watch the show, live, I stay awake until 2:00 am. I am a faithful viewer!

    See you later!

    June 24, 2009 at 7:55 pm |
  20. Donna Wood, Lil' Tennessee

    Oh wow, Paris! What a job! I am positively green with envy. O.k., pink! I hate the color green. I am seriously vain!

    Donna Wood
    (Lexington)
    Lil' Tennessee

    June 24, 2009 at 7:55 pm |
  21. Bruce

    Let this be a reminder to all the price that reporters pay to protect our right to know what is really going on. The tireless dedication to knowledge can't be taken lightly. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 24, 2009 at 7:45 pm |
  22. SurfaceEarth

    Sending words of support for all of these efforts.

    So many that go unknown, helping those without voices.

    Check out what we have highlighted, Ms. Shelley Seale, an author, humanitarian, mother, and traveller, announcing her new book:

    The Weight of Silence, India's Invisible Children.

    We had the the great fortune to learn of Ms. Shelley Seale and her efforts to help not only U.S. children, but also, the estimated 25 million homeless children in India.

    She is worth your time, if only to give voice to the children she struggles to help.

    Namaste.

    Surface Earth
    surfaceearth.com

    June 24, 2009 at 7:42 pm |
  23. shirin ash

    Hi Anderson.
    I love watching your program about Iran... My heart goes for my country going through such dramatic problem... I wish we never had to let SHAH go.. Although I was only 14 when he left the country,,, but I knew what is going to happen to us ....girls.... I left when I was 18.. I live in Vancouver now.....I do regret that I can not be in Tehran and join these remarcable woman on the street.. But we do get to gether every night at the art gallary in down town Vancouver for an hour silent scream... That all we can do.. I hope this revoloution wins and we all go back home.. Where we belong....

    Shirin...

    June 24, 2009 at 7:38 pm |
  24. Vicky, Ottawa

    Ah.... the city of lights! I'm not sure how you keep up the schedules you have, and the early morning times you have to produce live shots. Looking forward to the beautiful backdrop though the content itself will likely be more sobering. Bon appetit! with the sushi, but can't imagine how sushi won out over authentic French cuisine (maybe it travels to live locations better).

    June 24, 2009 at 7:30 pm |
  25. Annie Kate

    If you have to work late (or early as the case may be) then you are in a beautiful place to do it. Perhaps you will have some time to get something for breakfast from the street markets. Looking forward to seeing your shots from the Champs Elysees and the Arc de Triomphe and Anderson's report. I'm sure you all will ask but I am wondering why one journalist got released and not both. Are they from different countries and one country was just more effective in getting their journalist released? I hope Silva Harotonian is released soon and I am very happy for Saberi for being out of the prison – I'm sure she is happy about that too!!

    June 24, 2009 at 7:24 pm |
  26. Franky, Land of Lincon

    "Could I zip from London to Paris to produce Anderson’s interview with Roxana Saberi, the Iranian-American journalist recently released from a Tehran prison?"

    I say go for it, I mean, look at Gov Sanford, he zipped past his way towards Argentina and it was worth it, LOL!!! 🙂

    Trust me, yours is definitely worth it...damn, you guys at Paris??? Oh man and you're having Sushi too??? Na'h, I'm cool with the caffeine, I hate it as much it hates me, LOL!!! 🙂

    Those are good pics taken too, very nice.

    June 24, 2009 at 7:23 pm |