Fact Check: Was Joe Biden Video Filmed in Front of a Green Screen?

Speculation has erupted over Joe Biden, with a claim that the president used a green screen in an interaction with the press circulating online Wednesday.

Biden briefly met with reporters on Tuesday as he was leaving the White House for a visit to Chester, Pennsylvania, where he confirmed he does not have plans to travel to the southern border amid a surge of migration from Mexico.

Before Biden made his way toward Marine One on the South Lawn, heading out to promote his $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill, he was asked about the situation at the U.S. border with Mexico.

When one of the journalists asked, "Do you have any plans to travel to the southern border?" Biden replied, "Not at the moment."

The president briefly addresses reporters in the clip, but his appearance has prompted many to question if video special effects were involved.

Joe Biden
President Joe Biden stops briefly to talk to the press as he walks toward Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House on March 16, 2021, in Washington, D.C. Biden visited suburban Philadelphia on Tuesday as part of his effort to tout the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package to fight the pandemic and boost the economy. Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The Claim

Some people online are claiming that Biden's short interaction with reporters was fabricated and that it was filmed in front of a green screen.

Particularly, a number of people on Twitter are claiming that as the president addresses reporters, his hand appears to pass through a physical microphone.

A green screen is the green backdrop that allows digital-effects specialists to add computer-generated imagery (CGI) behind an individual.

Conservative Daily tweeted: "Notice the part where Joe Biden's hands appear to 'clip' on top of the microphones. Most likely answer: Biden was either on a green screen of those microphones were edited into the video."

Former Major League Baseball player and vocal Trump supporter Aubrey Huff added: "@JoeBiden taking questions in front of the green screen. Notice the hand going right through the microphone. It's all a big production.....and so many of you are falling for it. Wake up!"

@JoeBiden taking questions in front of the green screen. Notice the hand going right through the microphone. It’s all a big production.....and so many of you are falling for it. Wake up! https://t.co/4cN3VaWBtY

— Aubrey Huff (@aubrey_huff) March 17, 2021

This tweet was shared by Mixed Martial Arts athlete Tito Ortiz, who added: "Here's the same green screen video. #FakeNews."

He shared the same clip to his Instagram, writing: "This is all a façade. We are being played."

Here’s the same green screen video. #FakeNews pic.twitter.com/qvTy5AEoWW

— Tito Ortiz (@titoortiz) March 17, 2021

The clip was posted to Twitter by The Hill, prompting a discussion about the possible use of a green screen in the comments.

Reporter: "Do you have any plans to travel to the southern border?"

President Biden: "Not at the moment." pic.twitter.com/Sw5oIj5vKf

— The Hill (@thehill) March 16, 2021

One person tweeted: "Did.....did his hand travel through the mic at the bottom of the screen? Lol. Anyone else see that?"

Another added: "ok at first i thought these people were crazy then i caught that at 11 seconds the microphone is literally inside of his sleeve. he's not actually standing there."

A number of commenters disagreed with the speculation, as one person wrote: "Guys, I'm pretty sure that's just a really big mic head on a stick; they can get pretty big. Let's not get carried away with conspiracy theories."

Others shared clips from a different angle, suggesting that the other angle made Biden's sleeve appear to disappear as it passed through the fluffy boom microphone.

The Facts

The Washington Post published a clip of the moment from another angle, where the visual anomaly does not occur.

A side-by-side of the two angles filmed together shows that the angle that caused the confusion is due to the perspective from the camera.

Joe Biden green screen hands
A screenshot of the video posted by The Hill appears to show President Biden's hand appear in front of a reporter's microphone. The Hill/Twitter
Joe Biden hands green screen
A different video from The Washington Post shows Biden's same statement to the press from a different angle. Here the gray microphone is clearly some distance to the left of the president. The Washington Post

Pictures added to Getty also show a number of angles of the exchange, with nothing out of the ordinary.

In fact, the claim that a green screen was used is not compatible with how green screens work, as CGI images are added behind the individual, not in front as the first angle appears to show.

The Ruling


Joe Biden was not filmed in front of a green screen.