Hotel Showdown LogoJPGTravel Channel “Hotel Showdown” 

John S. Meyer, Director of Photography

Hotel Showdown is a unique reality show in that it follows four hoteliers, business owners, through a competition where they rate each others properties and one of them wins $25,000. The great thing about the show is that you can definitely learn from it. In Hotel Showdown, it’s following business owners who have a vested interest in learning from each other and comparing business styles. The shooting was intense and the days were packed with nonstop action.


Paddy Whacked

Paddy Whacked – History Channel

John S. Meyer, Director of Photography

Paddy Whacked is a long-form documentary that I shot with Producer / Director Wayne Chessler. This documentary required extensive reenactment scenes along with nicely lit interviews.


Money From Strangers

MTV – Money From Strangers

John S. Meyer, Director of Photography / Hidden Camera

OK, This was a totally whacky project. We shot dozens of crazy interactions with contestants who were put up to some of the most insane challenges, all captured on hidden camera.

Shooting involved hidden “bag cameras”, GoPros and other “planted” cameras, as well as main shooting with reactions and interviews, shot on Sony PMW-300’s.

Definitely a departure from traditional shooting!


CBS “Undercover Boss” Pilot

John Meyer, Director of Photography.

I shot both the pilot and the entire first season of CBS’s Undercover Boss. The pilot was very intense, a heck of a lot of shooting. As with most pilots, you definitely tend to overshoot. It’s just the nature of the beast. The network wants you to have amazing content. So you basically overshoot, knowing that in the end, there will be an attrition rate, whereby you’ll pick only the best segments to actually include in the pilot.

Shooting at Waste Management was amazing. One of the primary locations we shot at was a huge facility called a co-generation plant. Basically it’s a modern day incinerator that burns garbage and converts the energy into electricity. The inside of that place was like being on another planet! The facility is absolutely massive. There is space for probably 20 or more garbage trucks to pull inside and dump their loads off the edge of a huge pit. Next, the garbage is picked up by one of several huge cranes and dropped into a hopper that feeds directly into the intensely hot incinerator. The heat, dust and smell of the garbage in this place is something totally unique.


CBS “Undercover Boss” 1(800)Flowers Episode

John S. Meyer, Director of Photography

The 1(800)Flowers episode of Undercover Boss was a special one for us. Not only is 1(800)Flowers corporate office only a few miles from our hometown, but the top banana, Jim McCann, lives right in our neighborhood. Of course, we didn’t know this when we were first shooting the project. However, since we’ve gotten to know Jim over the past several years, it has been an absolutely fabulous experience.

We love the 1(800)Flowers brand, the people who work there, and their corporate culture.


TLC: “Four Houses” Christmas Special

John S. Meyer, Director of Photography

This special follows some seriously devoted fanatics of Christmas decorations. These four homeowners really know how to deck the halls. Shooting for this type of show takes some insanely long hours and a non-stop pace. The fact is, when shooting reality TV, there is simply so much ground to cover, so many elements involved, that there is never enough time. You’re always trying to beat the clock and you’re always fighting the light….Basically there are never enough hours in the day. It’s a challenge, but it’s fun also.

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