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May 25, 2010

LKL 25 – Larry gives his thoughts on your top 5 moments!!

Posted: 05:50 PM ET

'Right now on CNN.com, viewers can vote for the top 5 moments in "Larry King Live" history, as part of the show's 25th anniversary celebration. Here, Larry King admits he's surprised by the way the voting is going so far. Later in the week Larry will offer his personal top 5 moments.'

By Larry King - I never thought that this show would last 25 years - I didn't even know it would be a success.

I took it on kind of a dare. There was a three-year deal with Ted Turner, but I had an option to get out after a year.

I never thought I'd be on worldwide, or we'd have the kind of impact we've had on elections and cable in general.

Now, we're the longest-running show ever on the same network, at the same time, with the same host. And now you guys are picking the top moments in our shows history. Here's what I think of the results so far, with a week to go in the voting.

CLICK HERE TO READ LARRY'S THOUGHTS ON YOUR TOP 5 MOMENTS ON LKL!!

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May 3, 2010

LKL 25: Brother Leader does not like couches

Posted: 03:23 PM ET

It’s Larry King Live’s 25th anniversary and we want to share with you some of our LKL memories, what it’s like to work on the program and our favorite moments of the past 25 years of history-making television.  During the next few weeks, we’ll be posting blogs from Larry’s staffers as we count down to the program’s 25th anniversary week, beginning May 31st.    

Let us know what you think and don’t forget to rate YOUR favorite moments and enter our sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to Los Angeles to meet Larry in person!By LKL Supervising Producer Michael Watts

When we take the show on the road, a lot of thought goes towards seemingly simple matters.  In trying to create a suitable setting for an interview, the same questions always come up.  Curtains open or shut, plants or flowers, lamp or vase, table or desk?  One question we rarely ask is: couches or chairs?  Chairs are always the furnishing of choice.  They look better on-camera, don’t fill up the shot, and allow us more flexibility during the setup.

But sometimes on a remote shoot, diplomacy trumps all other considerations. So when the Libyans wanted a couch for Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi’s interview with Larry, we set up couches – one for Larry, one for Gadhafi.  Did it look good?  No.  Did we prefer chairs?  Yes.  But the Libyans had their reasons.  Brother Leader, as Gadhafi is referred to, usually wears loose, layered clothing that gets hung on, and sometimes doesn’t fit in, chairs.  Couches didn’t allow for the closeness in proximity we would have preferred between Larry and Gadhafi, but you pick your battles, and this wasn’t one I wanted to fight.

Once the couches were put in place, the Libyans became very particular about them.  Great care was taken to clean the couches, and we were asked not to touch them.  The Libyans themselves would only touch them with a cloth in hand.  They weren’t rude or abrasive about it, but once they were set, the couches were OFF LIMITS.

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April 30, 2010

LKL 25: People trust Larry like a friend

Posted: 05:30 PM ET

It’s Larry King Live’s 25th anniversary and we want to share with you some of our LKL memories, what it’s like to work on the program and our favorite moments of the past 25 years of history-making television.  During the next few weeks, we’ll be posting blogs from Larry’s staffers as we count down to the program’s 25th anniversary week, beginning May 31st.  

Let us know what you think and don’t forget to rate YOUR favorite moments and enter our sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to Los Angeles to meet Larry in person!

By LKL Sr. Producer Andrea Beaumont

I am the newbie here at Larry King.  I live in Colorado and one of the first weeks on the job was the craziest. 

Midday, I started to get emails about a boy trapped in a balloon.  I turned on the TV and there was the balloon live on the local news, headed towards Denver.  We quickly learned the family lived nearby in Ft. Collins so I hopped in my car and headed that way.  Swarms of media had gathered outside of the house.  I started talking to worried friends and neighbors.  Police announced that the balloon landed but there was no child inside. 

Hours later the police made a big announcement.  Falcon Heene had been found alive – in the attic of his house.

Shortly thereafter the family came out with Falcon in their arms to announce that everything was ok.  That night the whole family joined us live on the show.  Falcon told the world that the family “did it for the show” and even more craziness ensued.  Richard Heene ended up serving jail time for the stunt. 

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April 29, 2010

LKL Top 25

Posted: 08:00 PM ET

CLICK HERE to vote for the top 5 moments in Larry King Live HISTORY!

CLICK HERE to enter the LKL 25 Sweepstakes and for a chance to meet, and dine with Larry in Los Angeles.

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ICYMI: Trumps Top 5

Posted: 06:57 PM ET

Last night Donald and Melania Trump picked their LKL Top 5 moments live on the show.  They were:

5.  NAFTA Debate

4. Haiti: How You Can Help

3. Death of Michael Jackson

2. Tammy Faye's Last Interview

1. Marlon Brando

Do you agree with the Trumps picks?

CLICK HERE to pick your top 5 moments in LKL history.

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April 28, 2010

LKL 25: Red meat, gin & Julia Child

Posted: 01:36 PM ET

It’s Larry King Live’s 25th anniversary and we want to share with you some of our LKL memories, what it’s like to work on the program and our favorite moments of the past 25 years of history-making television.  During the next few weeks, we’ll be posting blogs from Larry’s staffers as we count down to the program’s 25th anniversary week, beginning May 31st.  

Let us know what you think and don’t forget to rate YOUR favorite moments and enter our sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to Los Angeles to meet Larry in person!

By LKL Senior Editorial Producer Carol Buckland

As Senior Editorial Producer for Larry King Live, it’s my responsibility (and privilege) to pre-interview most of the guests who appear on the show.  It’s a dream job.  If there’s such a thing as a Ph.D. in learning about interesting individuals, this is the best place in the world to earn it.

The list of people I’ve pre-interviewed for LKL over the years now includes hundreds of names.  Each conversation has been special.  While I value all of them, the most memorable for me was the first time I had an opportunity to speak with Julia Child.

I am not a person who impresses easily.  I can honestly say I’ve kept my cool while speaking with world leaders, A-list movie stars, best-selling authors, business moguls and intellectual powerhouses who – if their I.Q. points could be transmuted into degrees of temperature – would be able to boil water with their brains. 

But talking with Julia Child?  Gushing fan girl does not begin to describe my attitude as I approached my first pre-interview with her in December of 2000.  I mean, I grew up watching The French Chef on PBS.  I cooked (with varying degrees of success) out of her books.  I laughed myself sick at Dan Aykroyd’s impersonation of her on Saturday Night Live.  She was a role model to me.  An…idol.

I knew seven days ahead of time when I would be speaking with Julia Child.  Also aware of the pending pre-interview were every single member of my family, all my work colleagues, 99.9% of my friends, my dentist, my doorman, the produce guy at my local supermarket and just about anyone to whom I happened to speak in the week leading up to the big phone call.

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April 27, 2010

LKL 25: An experience like no other

Posted: 02:56 PM ET

It’s Larry King Live’s 25th anniversary and we want to share with you some of our LKL memories, what it’s like to work on the program and our favorite moments of the past 25 years of history-making television.  During the next few weeks, we’ll be posting blogs from Larry’s staffers as we count down to the program’s 25th anniversary week, beginning May 31st.  

Let us know what you think and don’t forget to rate YOUR favorite moments and enter our sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to Los Angeles to meet Larry in person!

By LKL Senior Producer Eleanor McManus

When people ask me what it's like to work for Larry King, I tell them it's like being on a roller-coaster ride every single day.  Some days may be slower than others, but the days there is breaking news are like no other!

No day is ever the same, and when you least expect it, when you're inching up that roller-coaster hill very slowly, all of a sudden you fly down with no chance of stopping.

It is an honor and privilege to work for Larry King.  I started out answering phones for the show about 10 years ago at the ripe young age of 23.  I loved the energy, the excitement, the wide range of topics and intriguing guests.  I was working for a true journalistic icon.

Everyone has a "First time I met Larry" story, but I can't seem to recall my first time.  Perhaps because every time I see him, Larry King is the exact same person he was when I began work for him 10 years ago.  He talks to everyone from an A-list celebrity to a receptionist the same way – a rare trait in TV.  He doesn't consider himself a talk show icon, instead, he considers himself the guy next door who happens to have a TV show.  He really is a salt-of-the-earth guy, which is so refreshing especially in the television business.

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April 26, 2010

Looking back at 25 years of Larry King Live!

Posted: 03:50 PM ET

It’s Larry King Live’s 25th anniversary and we want to share with you some of our LKL memories, what it’s like to work on the program and our favorite moments of the past 25 years of history-making television.  During the next few weeks, we’ll be posting blogs from Larry’s staffers as we count down to the program’s 25th anniversary week, beginning May 31st.

Let us know what you think and don’t forget to rate YOUR favorite moments and enter our sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to Los Angeles to meet Larry in person!

By LKL Senior Producer Hunter Waters

Years after interning for “Larry King Live,” I travelled back to Washington, D.C. for my official job interview.

Like most job applicants, I dressed in my finest suit, ready to impress. I was hardly prepared, though, to start helping out for the type of show we were taping that day; Jack Hanna and his animal friends were in town!  When Jack does our show, the animals show up hours before the taping starts.  While they’re kept in cages during their travels to the studio, once they’re here, they want to get out.  The trainers opened up a cage with the cutest lion cub so that it could roam around one of our conference rooms, and my duty that day was to make sure it stayed within the confines of the conference room.  As you can imagine, the cub also wanted to play a bit and had the best time pretending my leg was a scratching pole.  Needless to say, those suit pants were unmendable after that show.  

A decade later, having covered the 9/11 attacks, wars, legal cases and all the major news stories of the past 10 years, more often than not, the moments here at “Larry King Live” are ones we’ll always want to remember.

Who else can say they’ve held Bo “10” Derek’s hand while escorting her at an event to our camera location for an interview?

Having the opportunity to celebrate former President Bush’s 80th birthday and watching him parachute out of a plane certainly ranks up there.  The night before his celebratory jump, Larry emceed the official birthday party at the Astrodome in Houston, Texas.  With a stage set-up at home plate, Larry shuffled musical entertainers on and off the stage while introducing speeches by dignitaries paying tribute to the former President.    

Best moment of that day for me, though, was having the chance to see two worlds collide when Rush Limbaugh asked me to take a picture of him with former Soviet Premiere Mikhail Gorbachev.     Well, that, and getting a slice of this birthday cake (shown here with fellow LKL producer Eleanor McManus).

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