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.

What is a Producer?

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.  

What’s the role of the Producer in Factual Entertainment shows?

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

  • Plot storylines

  • 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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