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Will Ferrell hosts North Dakota newscast in Ron Burgundy character

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Viewers in Bismarck, North Dakota who tuned in for the local news on KXMB on Saturday night were treated to a shock when their news broadcast was anchored by “Anchorman” himself: Ron Burgundy.

Will Ferrell did an admirable job remaining in character for the entirety of the 30 minute newscast despite covering such hard-hitting news subjects like Black Friday deals, stories about Christmas shopping, and a shoplifter who left behind a cart of items stolen during Black Friday Christmas shopping. Burgundy brought his trademark gravitas to story about a trash fire in the parking lot of a local Sam’s Club, as well as an intriguing human interest story about a teacher who grew his beard out for an entire month.

Perhaps the most impressive part of the newscast was not the professionalism with which Burgundy conducted himself -- we’ve come to expect that from one of the hardest working men in the news business -- but the top-notch performance from the rest of the KX News team, all of whom elevated their game in the presence of an industry legend. Lead anchor Amber Schatz maintained her composure even as Burgundy leaned into one of her shots and asked her if she was single, the weatherman was authoritative and informative as he reported from the “Dakota Storm Center,” and the sports anchor maintained his composure despite getting one of Burgundy’s famous backrubs in the middle of his report on high school basketball.

According to Schatz, she didn’t learn about the guest anchor until Wednesday and it was not promoted in advance to home viewers.

"The second he said, 'Good evening, I'm Ron Burgundy,' I lost it," Schatz said. "It was really hard not to laugh."

All in all, it was a typically classy effort from the San Diego newsman, whose new movie “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues” arrives in theatres on Dec. 18.

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