Backstory: Three cameras, two ladders – snapping Tesla's Elon Musk at court


NEW YORK (Reuters) – (Backstory is a series of reports showing how Reuters journalists work and the standards under which they operate)

FILE PHOTO: Tesla Inc. CEO Elon Musk (C) exits after attending a S.E.C. hearing at the Manhattan Federal Courthouse in New York, April 4, 2019. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz/File Photo

Hundreds of reporters and photographers pressed up against steel barriers last week to get a glimpse of Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk at Manhattan’s downtown federal courthouse.

Three Reuters photographers used two ladders and years of experience to get some of the clearest, unobstructed shots of him entering and leaving the building, which were used by media outlets around the world.

Two hours before, Brendan McDermid, Shannon Stapleton and freelancer Eduardo Munoz staked out both entrances to the courthouse, which was ringed by barricades to control the expected crowd.

About 30 minutes before the hearing, concerning Musk’s legal spat with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, two brand-new Teslas pulled up in front of the courthouse. As soon as Musk stepped out, a crowd of photographers and reporters swarmed him.

McDermid and Stapleton, perched on small ladders, snapped pictures of Musk as he scaled the court’s pale granite steps.