Was Donald Trump’s White House Video Filmed in Front of Green Screen?

President Donald Trump released a video message on Twitter on Thursday discussing his health and the treatment he received following his COVID-19 diagnosis.



a man wearing a suit and tie: U.S. President Donald Trump gestures upon return to the White House from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on October 05, 2020 in Washington, DC. Trump spent three days hospitalized for coronavirus. Trump's recent video led to speculation about a green screen.


© Win McNamee/Getty Images
U.S. President Donald Trump gestures upon return to the White House from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on October 05, 2020 in Washington, DC. Trump spent three days hospitalized for coronavirus. Trump’s recent video led to speculation about a green screen.

In the video, Trump stands in the White House grounds. There was immediate speculation that the president was not in fact outside but had used a green screen to produce a false background.

The Claim:

Social media users raised the question of a green screen once Trump tweeted his video yesterday. The claim soon gained traction on Twitter and some prominent people began asking the question. Apparent distortions in the video, like the shadows and the background appearing to be on a loop, prompted the comments.

“I think it’s pretty clearly a green screen. The sharpness of the outline and the lighting. Also it’s a very long way to bring a sick president to shoot something when you have the Rose Garden,” wrote MSNBC host Chris Hayes.

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Christopher Orr, film critic for The Atlantic, also said it appeared a green screen had been used: “Why the digital background? It’s a sunny day in DC. This could have been filmed on the actual White House lawn.”

Orr later deleted the tweet and sent another, sharing the opinion of another user that the video background was genuine. However, by then the speculation had taken off.

“This is in front of a green screen,” tweeted veteran Star Trek actor George Takei, who is a prominent social media user and a critic of the president. His tweet now has more than 4,000 retweets.

The Facts:

Hany Farid, a professor

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