TV / Film ProducerJob Description:
TV and film producers oversee the production process of a programme or film. This could include creative vision, budgeting and marketing.Job Category:
What you will do:
Producers generally manage the production process from start to finish, organising people and resources. But there are different types of producer roles, with different responsibilities.
An Executive producer will usually be responsible for an entire production, including the creative vision and budget – though won’t necessarily take a hands-on role on-set day to day, as a general Producer would.
You could be:
- pitching ideas to TV commissioners
- having the final say on whether production goes ahead
- hiring staff, cast and crew, as well as recruiting interviewees for documentaries
- managing a production company
A Development producer has the creative insight for the production, whether this is finding a story for a documentary or reviewing scripts for a film.
You could be:
- giving screenwriters feedback on their scripts and working on script development
- deciding which projects to produce, or creating programme ideas yourself
- ‘testing out’ ideas and scripts to get feedback
- researching locations, historical context and other details to create the ‘treatment’ (which details all aspects of the film or programme)
A Production executive oversees the business side of the production, ensuring financial goals are met.
You could be:
- negotiating contracts between production companies and broadcasters
- working out what resources are needed
- managing cash flow
- making sure the production stays on schedule and within budget
- knowledge of media production and communication
- knowledge of English language
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently
As well as:
To become a TV or Film Producer, you don’t necessarily need specific subjects, but a strong educational foundation is beneficial for this career. Producers are responsible for overseeing and managing various aspects of film and television production, including finances, schedules, and creative decisions. Here are some subjects that can be helpful:
- Media Studies: This subject can provide valuable insights into the world of media production, including the principles of storytelling, film history, and production techniques. It’s directly related to the field of TV and film.
- Business Studies: Producers often handle budgets, contracts, and project management. A strong foundation in business studies can be helpful for managing the financial and logistical aspects of production.
- English: Good communication skills are essential in the film and television industry. A strong command of the English language, both written and spoken, is beneficial for script development, negotiations, and project communication.
- Mathematics: Basic math skills are crucial for budgeting and financial planning, which are common responsibilities for producers.
- Art and Design: Courses in art and design can help you develop an artistic and creative eye, which is essential for understanding visual aesthetics and making creative decisions.
There are no set requirements, but you’ll usually need:
- experience in both the creative and business sides of film or programme making
- an in-depth understanding of the production process
- a network of contacts in the industry
In TV, you could start as a runner or production assistant and work your way up, or progress through production office roles.
In film, you’ll usually start as a runner, then work your way up to production coordinator, line producer and production manager. You could also progress through the roles of 3rd, 2nd and 1st assistant director.
Working Hours and Environment:
Hours can be long and irregular.
Freelance contract work is very common.
The work is mainly office-based, but you’ll visit studios or locations for meetings. Location work could be anywhere in the UK or overseas, so you’ll travel and be away from home for long periods.
Career Path & Progression:
Producers normally start as runners or production assistants, and work their way up to production coordinator roles, before becoming producer or production manager.
With enough experience – usually several years – you could become an executive producer, or set up your own production company. You could also shift from a general producer role into a development or production executive role.