Television, film and video producers manage all stages of the production process, overseeing all elements from conception to completion
As well as overseeing the production process, your responsibility as a television, film or video producer involves securing funding and keeping the production within the allocated budget. You may also be involved in marketing and distribution.
With ultimate responsibility for the success of a finished film, TV programme or video, you'll work closely with directors and other production staff, either in a studio or on location, to ensure a creative and stable working environment for everyone involved in the project.
As a television/film/video producer, you'll need to:
- read, research and assess ideas and finished scripts
- secure the finance for a new production
- commission writers or secure the rights to novels, plays or screenplays
- hire key staff, including a director and a crew to shoot programmes, films or videos
- pull together all the strands of creative and practical talent involved in the project to create a team
- liaise and discuss projects with financial backers - projects can range from a small, corporate video costing £500, to a multimillion-pound-budget Hollywood feature film
- control the production's budget and allocate resources
- organise shooting schedules - dependent on the type of producer role and availability of support staff
- hold regular meetings with the director to discuss characters and scenes
- act as a sounding board for the director
- troubleshoot problems that arise during production
- ensure compliance with relevant regulations, codes of practice and health and safety laws
- supervise the progress of the project from production through to post-production
- deliver the finished production on time and to budget.
Although you may be involved in all areas of the project, including pre-production, production, post-production and marketing, you may delegate some responsibilities to an associate or line producer.
- Junior level salaries for intern, runner or junior researcher roles range from £18,000 to £25,000. With researcher roles attracting salaries of around £24,000 to £30,000.
- Assistant producers earn a minimum of £36,000, increasing as they progress with more credits.
- Experienced producers can earn £40,000 to £55,000 and departmental head positions are often in the region of £60,000 to £80,000, plus benefits.
Salaries will vary depending on the size of the company and the size and scale of the project.
Fees for freelance producers will also vary considerably, depending on experience and whether you work on TV factuals or dramas, or on feature films. For advice on pay guidelines for freelancers, see the Broadcasting Entertainment Cinematograph and Theatre Union (BECTU) - recommended rates for writers, producers and directors.
Although the financial rewards can be good, more than £1,000 a week for experienced producers, many jobs are offered on a self-employed or freelance-contract basis so there can be a lack of security that comes with a regular salary.
Income figures are intended as a guide only.
Work involves regular unsocial hours at weekends and in the evenings. Long hours and time spent in meetings or on location is the norm.
Career breaks may create difficulties because of the competitive nature of the industry and the need to network and keep up to date with industry changes.
What to expect
- Producers may spend a lot of time in the office or may be based in a studio or on location. Although much of the work tends to take place in large cities in the UK, location work can be anywhere in the country or abroad.
- It's common for producers to work in a self-employed or freelance capacity and work is frequently offered on a contract basis. The freelance nature of the work may cause some financial insecurity. See the ScreenSkills Freelance Toolkit for an introduction to freelancing in the screen industries.
- You'll work closely with a team that includes directors, screenwriters, actors and the production team.
- You need to be highly motivated and able to withstand pressure as the job can be very challenging.
- Flexibility and mobility are extremely important, as is the ability to handle a high level of financial responsibility.
Although this area of work is open to all graduates, the following subjects at degree or HND level may increase your chances:
- communication and media studies
- film studies/filmmaking/film production
- information technology
- media production and broadcast production
- television production/film and television production.
It's possible to get into film and TV production via an apprenticeship in creative and digital media. See what's available at find an apprenticeship. Organisations such as the BBC also offer apprenticeships, for example BBC Production Apprenticeships.
Although you don't need a postgraduate qualification, courses containing practical work experience in production may increase your chances of success in a notoriously competitive environment. Be aware that entry to these programmes is competitive and most require some previous experience so that you can give evidence of your practical skills and your work. Search postgraduate courses in media production.
Look for courses that provide cutting-edge technical resources, a reasonable final production budget and contacts within the industry. For information on relevant training courses, see:
A degree or relevant training course alone isn't enough. You need to build up substantial experience in the industry before moving into the role of producer.
You'll need to have:
- confidence in your ability
- strong communication and people skills
- editorial judgement
- presentation and pitching skills
- negotiation skills
- strong time and resource management skills
- organisation and planning skills
- creative ability
- the ability to cope well under pressure
- commercial awareness and a good head for figures
- self-motivation and the ability to motivate others
- leadership skills.
You'll also need awareness of health and safety issues in the workplace and understanding of the industry regulations and codes of practice.
As this is a job that requires experience, even first-time producers will have a significant track record in the industry, perhaps as an assistant producer or in research, marketing and scriptwriting. Producers are expected to have several years' experience and a thorough understanding of all programme-making techniques, including directing and editing skills.
Exploit any opportunities to network either during or after your degree as those in the sector will expect it. Look out for work placements with the large broadcasting companies. BBC, Channel 4 and ITV, for example, often have formal work experience schemes. Competition for a place on these is fierce, however, so it's worth looking at other options as well.
Consider doing voluntary work at some of the television and film festivals held annually throughout the UK and attend industry networking events and seminars. You can also make your own content or try to get some experience as a runner during or after university.
Targeted speculative applications to some of the smaller film and video companies for work experience or work shadowing opportunities may also be useful. The Producers Alliance for Cinema and Television (Pact), for example, has a searchable list of member companies that include UK independent TV, film and digital media companies - see Pact - Find a member.
Any experience that can help you establish and develop industry contacts will be valuable.
Find out more about the different kinds of work experience and internships that are available.
Major employers include broadcasters, such as:
- Channel 4
- Channel 5
- S4C (Wales)
Within the film industry you may find employment with:
- independent production companies (known as 'indies')
- production and facilities houses
- community film/video projects
- digital and internet channels (e.g. YouTube).
Look for job vacancies at:
- Freelance Video Collective
- The Call Sheet - subscription required.
- The Stage
- The Unit List
Competition is fierce. Job vacancies are rarely advertised, so developing a network of contacts is essential as many jobs are gained through word of mouth.
Use creative job-hunting methods, such as approaching production and post-production companies speculatively with evidence of your work (e.g. showreel). Be prepared to follow up letters and CVs in person by knocking on doors. Research the industry and individual production companies thoroughly. Keep abreast of current trends.
Try focusing your job search initially on runner positions as this is the area of work where recent graduates are most likely to find a job, although even runners may need to show that they have acquired some experience. Running is a good way to network, to help get a first job or training place.
With considerable experience it may be possible to find work as a film/video production manager - the role of deputy to a film/video producer, organising all the essential support facilities for the team, resolving problems and helping to bring the production in on budget. Experience in this role could potentially lead to employment as a producer.
Prospective employers can browse CVs and call candidates for interview through sites such as:
Most of your training will be carried out on the job, although there are numerous short courses and some training schemes available. You'll also need to undertake industry-approved health and safety training.
ScreenSkills is the industry-led skills charity for the screen industries and provides information on a range of training schemes, some run by themselves and others by third-party training bodies, aimed at helping people working in the screen industries progress their career. They provide an events directory, which lists relevant masterclasses, networking socials, training camps and workshops. Look forSelect Courses- these have been endorsed by ScreenSkills as offering industry-relevant teaching.
Training for independent TV and digital media production companies and freelancers is provided by organisations such as NFTS (National Film and Television School), which offers a range of courses relating to production. If you live in Scotland or Wales, you can access NFTS Scotland or NFTS Cymru Wales.
Membership ofThe Production Guildis useful and provides access to training and seminars, as well as to advice, resources and job information.
Programme makers and producers working in television, film and video tend to work as self-employed freelancers on fixed, often short-term, contracts. You'll typically have substantial relevant experience and will have worked your way up to the role of producer, working as a co-producer, line producer, associate producer or distributor first.
There is no fixed route for promotion for producers and progression depends on opportunities arising on an 'as and when' basis. The common alternative is to progress by creating a studio, or by moving into work as an executive producer, accountable for several projects.
Taking the time to learn about all aspects of the television, film or video industries and volunteering to work on new projects or programmes can help you progress in your career.
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A television producer is a person who oversees one or more aspects of video production on a television program. Some producers take more of an executive role, in that they conceive new programs and pitch them to the television networks, but upon acceptance they focus on business matters, such as budgets and contracts.What is a video producer job description? ›
Video producers call the shots during video production, and guide video projects from conception to completion. Video producer jobs can include responsibilities ranging from casting talent and coordinating logistics to collaborating with other departments to ensure the video meets business objectives.What is the difference between a TV Producer and a film producer? ›
A television producer is different from a movie producer. Usually, the "executive producer" for TV is the "showrunner". They are the creative power of the series. TV producers are tasked with developing concepts, raising funds, hiring staff, budgeting, and delivering a high-quality show.What skills do you need to be a TV Producer? ›
- knowledge of media production and communication.
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure.
- knowledge of English language.
- leadership skills.
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail.
- the ability to use your initiative.
- to be flexible and open to change.
Generally, Producers make money by receiving producing fees set out in the production budget. In other words, Producers don't normally get paid unless their film or television show is actually produced and financed. It is possible to make profits from a successful show, but profitable shows are few and far between.What are the job requirements for a film producer? ›
- Minimum 5 years of experience within the industry.
- Superb portfolio of prior movie productions.
- Excellent communication and coordination skills.
- Effective time-management abilities.
- Detail-oriented, creative, and innovative.
- Strong leadership skills.
- Bachelor's degree in film or similar field.
Some of these responsibilities include: Raising or securing funds to pay for the entire production of the movie. Creating a complete movie budget that supports production from start to finish. Organizing a production team to include actors, writers, editors, technical staff, directors and more.What makes a great video producer? ›
Working on tight schedules, with loads of equipment and shifting parts is part of being a producer. Staying organized is a major key to a successful video production. A good video producer stays organized. They make schedules, send emails, and generally ensure everything is in order from top down.Is a video producer the same as a production manager? ›
While the line producer sets the limits on budgets and negotiates the key contracts, production managers carry out the decisions that have been made.Are TV producers well paid? ›
The average salary for a television producer is $66,548 in the US. The average television producer salary ranges between $38,000 and $115,000 in the US. Hourly rates for television producers in the US typically range between $18 and $55 an hour.
While ZipRecruiter is seeing annual salaries as high as $86,500 and as low as $79,000, the majority of Television Producer salaries currently range between $81,500 (25th percentile) to $84,500 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $85,500 annually across the United States.Who gets paid more actor or producer? ›
Producers do get paid more than actors when the film is successful, and from that, we mean Jurassic World kind of successful. But if the movie is kind of a flop, the actors usually make more. This is because the actors are usually brought to the film with a predesigned salary range.What do film producers do on a daily basis? ›
A producer's job involves planning, coordination and management around a movie's script and writing, casting, directing, and editing as well as finances, marketing, release and distribution.What do TV producers major in? ›
Although there are no specific educational or training requirements for an individual to become a TV producer, most producers have a bachelor's degree in majors like cinema, journalism and communication, according to the BLS.How much do successful TV producers make? ›
While ZipRecruiter is seeing annual salaries as high as $39,000 and as low as $28,000, the majority of Tv Show Producer salaries currently range between $31,500 (25th percentile) to $37,000 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $38,500 annually across the United States.Are TV producers in demand? ›
Employment of producers and directors is projected to grow 8 percent from 2021 to 2031, faster than the average for all occupations. About 17,500 openings...
There's no single way to become a producer. Some enter the industry by interning at a successful production company, some work on a smaller piece that later takes off, and some begin as actors, filmmakers, or writers.Is it hard to be a TV producer? ›
As a producer, you need to master a broader skill set than many jobs require. You need excellent people skills, creative skills, and business know-how. Even if Netflix or NBC greenlights your show, you may have a much smaller budget than you want.What is the best major to become a film producer? ›
Film or Cinema Studies
If you're specifically looking to get a film and television producer education, your best option is to pursue a bachelor's degree program in a field like film studies or cinema studies. In a film studies bachelor's program, students learn about all aspects of filmmaking.
Producers generally hold degrees in film or acting. Journalism or communication degrees are related to producing as well as degrees in business. Producers may earn their degrees at a college or university, or they may choose to attend an independent art school.
They sometimes must work in unpleasant conditions, such as bad weather. Theater directors and producers may travel with a touring show across the country, while those in film and television may work on location (a site away from the studio and where all or part of the filming occurs).What is producer profile? ›
Producer Profile is also an important tool for producers to compare themselves to their peer group. Producers can see how much others are compensated, what commission rates are paid, the amount of sales achieved, the time actually spent on sales, difficulties experienced, and opportunities for professional development.What is the career path for a movie producer? ›
You can climb the career ladder through continuous education. Consider earning a master's degree in Fine Arts. Through courses such as playwriting, set design, acting, directing, advanced script editing, documentary production, and commercial production, you will upgrade your knowledge and skills.Is film producer a hard job? ›
It depends on what your goals are. Becoming a producer on high-profile productions, such as Hollywood films, is very difficult. However, many people start by producing their own low-budget films, which is not as hard.What are key characteristics in producers? ›
The 10 vital qualities for stepping into the shoes of a successful video producer include creativity, selectivity, patience, concentration, efficiency, communication, organization, attentiveness, cooperation, and flexibility.Who is the most successful film producer? ›
|Rank||Name||Total worldwide box office|
|1||Kevin Feige||$29.101 billion|
|2||Kathleen Kennedy||$12.900 billion|
|3||Jerry Bruckheimer||$12.326 billion|
|4||David Heyman||$11.895 billion|
The qualifications you need to become a video producer include a bachelor's degree in performance arts, film production, or business administration, along with experience in the film and entertainment industry.Is a film producer higher than a director? ›
Producer vs Director: What's The Difference? In short, a producer is mainly responsible for managing the behind the scenes aspects of production. A director, on the other hand, is more so responsible for the creative elements of the final product that will be put on screen.Is a film producer like a project manager? ›
Many organizations use these titles interchangeably, understanding their differences are imperative to improving your workflow and efficiencies. Put very simply, the typical project manager manages work effort and staff. The producer is more involved in the creation of the work.Is producer better than executive producer? ›
The executive producer is at the top of the producer hierarchy. They work closely with other kinds of producers but their job descriptions differ. The executive producer may find a script or a book to option first and then hire the producer to execute the project.
High. Stress is very commonplace for film producers, contributing negatively towards career satisfaction.How many hours do TV producers work? ›
Workdays for producers and directors may be long and irregular. Many do not have a standard workweek, because their schedules may change with each assignment or project. Evening, weekend, and holiday work is common. Most producers and directors work full time, and some work more than 40 hours per week.Who is the richest television producer? ›
|1||Paul Allen Net Worth: $20B|
|2||George Lucas Net Worth: $10B|
|3||David Geffen Net Worth: $8B|
|4||Steven Spielberg Net Worth: $8B|
|5||Jeffrey Skoll Net Worth: $7B|
Television producers often have the same employee benefits as any “standard” worker. For the duration of the contract, which is usually one year, they often receive medical and life insurance, as well as reimbursement for travel expenses and paid vacation.Do TV producers have agents? ›
It is not necessary for a producer to have an agent of their own to make a film, but agents are needed to gain access to individuals that the producers need to make the film. For any producer attempting to get their project off the ground, the enthusiasm of an agent can be of great assistance.Do producers just pay for movies? ›
Producers are involved in the financial decisions of movies, television shows and theatrical productions. Producers raise money for a production by finding film investment companies to finance the production, or by funding it themselves. The funding goes to hire the director, cast and crew.Do producers get royalties on shows? ›
Films and television shows, just like songs, are creative works that are protected by copyright. As such, the owners of film copyrights are entitled to royalties when their products are used. In film and television, the copyright owners are typically the producers.Why do so many actors become producers? ›
While not every actor excels at so many aspects of filmmaking, many actors turn to producing in order to have more control over their careers, as well as the projects in which they're involved.Do producers get paid per episode? ›
As a result, Executive Producers and Showrunners are usually making anywhere between $50,000 – $150,000 per episode depending on what network or streaming service they're working for.Is film production a good career? ›
So is Filmmaking a Good Career? The answer to the above question is yes – but it's not always easy. With hard work, skill and a little bit of luck, you can make a name for yourself in this creative and ever-changing industry.
The most popular of all film industry jobs and crucial to the completion of any film, directors are responsible for overseeing all aspects of the creative process and bringing them together.
Pros and Cons.
|Freedom to make your own schedule||You must be disciplined enough to|
|New opportunities arise through||Marketing and business skills are as|
A Day in the Life of a Television Producer. Television producers make sure that television shows run smoothly in all details, and take responsibility for everything from coordinating writers and performers/correspondents right down to overseeing the fact-checking of credit names and titles.Do producers write scripts? ›
Once an idea is grabbed, the producer will work to develop it from an idea into a concept for a film. A producer will work with a writer (or writers) to hammer out a treatment, and then a script for production, as well as oversee any rewrites.What are the different types of TV producers? ›
- Executive producer.
- Co-executive producer.
- Supervising producer.
- Coordinating producer.
- Content of producer, producer of the content.
A Television Producer, or TV Producer, oversees and controls technical and artistic aspects of television productions. Their main duties include developing a television show concept, raising or sourcing funding based on their budget for the project, and hiring a team to produce the show.What is the highest paying occupation? ›
|OCCUPATION||2021 MEDIAN PAY|
|Airline pilots, copilots, and flight engineers||$202,180 per year|
|Anesthesiologists||Equal to or greater than $208,000 per year|
|Cardiologists||Equal to or greater than $208,000 per year|
|Dermatologists||Equal to or greater than $208,000 per year|
An Executive Producer (EP) is the head producer who supervises other producers in the creation of a film, television show, web series, commercial, or theater performance. They may work independently or on behalf of the studio, financiers or the distributors.Do TV producers make good money? ›
While ZipRecruiter is seeing annual salaries as high as $86,500 and as low as $79,000, the majority of Television Producer salaries currently range between $81,500 (25th percentile) to $84,500 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $85,500 annually across the United States.What is the difference between Executive Producer and producer? ›
A producer may already be working on a script with a writer and will reach out to an executive producer to finance the project. The producer answers to the executive producer about the film's budget. The executive producer does not get involved with the day-to-day of a production like a producer does.
Although there are no specific educational or training requirements for an individual to become a TV producer, most producers have a bachelor's degree in majors like cinema, journalism and communication, according to the BLS.Who is higher than a producer? ›
In short, a producer is mainly responsible for managing the behind the scenes aspects of production. A director, on the other hand, is more so responsible for the creative elements of the final product that will be put on screen.Do executive producers get royalties? ›
In film and television “royalties” are referred to as residuals, and they are reserved for the creatives involved in the project. That being said, if an executive producer plays a direct role in the creative development of the script, they may have the right to earn residuals on their film or show.Why do films have so many producers? ›
One reason for the increase in executive producers per film is the desire to spread risk, whether due to increasing cost of film making for larger budget films, often met by multiple studios banding together, or alternatively the need to attract multiple smaller investors for lower budget independent films.Can you make a living as a producer? ›
Producers who put in a small amount of work may earn around $100 per month from beat sales where others who focus their strategy on these platforms can earn $1000+, some even making a six figure salary each year on beat sales alone. And this is just one revenue stream.