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TV highlights of Winter Olympics

November 26, 1997

Television highlights of CBS’ 130 hours of coverage of the Nagano Olympics (Feb. 7-22):

FIGURE SKATING _ CBS considers figure skating the ``heart and soul″ of its Olympic coverage, and along with commentary from Scott Hamilton and others, is preparing state-of-the-art animation to explain the subtleties of the sport and especially the various jumps. CBS will also have four unmanned, robotic cameras backstage to catch the skaters before and after their competitions.

ALPINE SKIING _ If weather permits, and that’s a big if, a good deal of the skiing competition could be broadcast live, or with only a short video delay. CBS has mapped out the downhill course in detail, and will enhance its coverage with computer-game style graphics designed to ``put the viewer in the race.″

HOCKEY _ Nagano will be the first Olympics to feature teams full of NHL stars, so expect CBS to cover this sport closely. The final in women’s hockey _ a newcomer to the Olympics _ may not be aired because of its late-night (for American audiences) scheduling.

EXOTICA _ Expect a feature look at rice, and lots of air time from venerable Zenkoji, a 1,400-year-old Buddhist temple where CBS will have a studio. Producers have also scoped out the most majestic scenes from the surrounding Japan Alps.

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