Producers in the television industry can be found working with budgets of hundreds of thousands or working on a shoestring. Broadcast is a challenging environment to navigate but in today's TV industry, producers need to be flexible and creative.
Producers are in charge of every aspect of a TV programme’s production from pre-production to post production. Producers are inherent organisers who have a knack for approving and assembling the complete production team - from hiring a production Manager to sourcing locations and animal handlers. Producers are accountable for the ultimate success or failure of the production - and are responsible for creating an environment where onscreen and off screen talent can flourish. They are the captain at the helm of a ship that could quite easily capsize or blow off-course.
Some producers start on a project in its development stage (sometimes working up their own programme ideas), but more often than not - they’re the first person to come on board as soon as a project has been green lit by a TV channel. Once a budget has been approved, the producer finds a director, or may even direct the programme themselves. If they are working with a reasonable budget then they work with the director to hire the chosen crew. Producers will be working with the production manager, coordinator, AP and researchers. The role of the producer is divided into one part creator, one part administrator, one part communicator, and one part negotiator.
In the career hierarchy, a producer is sandwiched between an assistant producer (below) and a series producer or executive producer (above). They’re usually involved in a series (or strand) of shows, or part of a big studio show, working with some other producers. A producer should be capable of:
Take responsibility for a one-off programme, or an episode that fits within a series
Take responsibility for and manage the creative team
Oversee setting up of shoots and and brief writing
Write scripts and compose interview questions
Find locations and negotiate with location owners/local authorities
Cast contributors and oversee the casting team
Oversee and check archive clearances
Have a specialism within at least one programme genre
Editing/overseeing an edit
May need self-shooting skills
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