5 minute read

Film and Television Producer Job Description, Career as a Film and Television Producer, Salary, Employment

Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

Education and Training Varies – see below

Average Salary Varies – see below

Job Outlook Good

Basic Job Description

Film and television producers are responsible for all the administrative aspects of creating a film or television show. The producer determines the budget needed in order to create the product, and also determines where the money will come from and how it will be distributed. They are in charge of taking out loans or applying for grants that could be used for the project. Producers also hire directors and other crew to help determine how much money needs to be spent on each aspect of film development including wardrobe, film crew, set displays and other features. Producers also buy the rights to books or plays that they feel could be made into a movie. From there, they will find a director to work with and get the project started. Producers handle the finances and therefore make sure each department is running exactly how it should be.

Education and Training Requirements

There is no specific educational requirement for someone who wants to work as a film or television producer. Producers need to be well educated on all aspects of the film and television industry so they can understand where money needs to go and how to create an efficient budget for a project. Producers also need a good business sense so they know how to plan a budget and negotiate loans and payments, and also hire the right people to work with.

Film producers are frequently college graduates who start off making low budget films to produce and gain exposure and experience. Students who want to make a career out of producing films will take film, theatre or movie production courses.

Getting the Job

Anyone with a budget and plan can produce a movie or television show. The main way for a producer to get hired by a large film company is to gain experience and exposure through previous projects. A large part of the film industry is about who knows who, and building a good reputation and large portfolio of work is integral to moving forward.

Film and television producers must also have a strong business sense. Producers need to be aggressive, professional and keep a strict schedule to make sure everything is running smoothly and everyone who has been hired has a job to perform. Producers work closely with directors, who also help take charge of a film crew.

Job Prospects, Employment Outlook and Career Development

Film and television producers are already working close to the top of their field. The biggest advancements producers usually make in their career is having a film they produced make a larger amount of money and have a bigger audiences. The goal of many producers is to have a film make it to the big screen all around the world, or have a television show make it on prime time television hours.

Employment outlook for producers is expected to stay relatively steady over the next decade. There are plenty of people who want to be successful movie producers, while few actually make it to where they all want to be. Regardless of economic setbacks in the film industry, producers who create outstanding work, are aggressive about showing it to the right people, and know how to stand out from the rest of the crowd will become successful with their work. Film and television is an extremely competitive industry, so talent, skill and motivation play a large role in whether or not a producer will succeed.

Working Conditions and Environment

Film and television producers spend most of their time working on set of a film or TV show. Since the producer is in charge of almost all aspects of the film, they need to be available during almost all of the production process. Producers observe how everything is going and make sure it is running smoothly. They also have the ability to change how any scene is being shot or performed and can work with directors to determine whether shots will be used or need to be redone.

Producers often work long and unusual hours on set of a film. They also spend a lot of spare time handling finances and paperwork to make sure the film’s budget is working efficiently and money is being spent where it needs to be spent.

Producers have one of the most important and stressful jobs of anyone working on a film or television set. They have some of the biggest responsibilities and are the person other workers will come to with questions or concerns. Producers are often passionate about what they do and will do anything to reach their goal, so working long hours and undergoing plenty of stress is often worth it in the end.

Salary and Benefits

Film and television producers have the potential to make salaries that range from $20,000 a year to millions in a year, depending on the success of their films or television shows. Many producers do not start off with a full-time job working as a producer. It is something they will do in their spare time as a hobby, and possibly turn a profit after awhile. Producers often start off making low budget films and may take home a few thousand dollars for it, and eventually advance to produce a film that brings in millions of dollars.

Producers who work for a film or television company have the potential to make a yearly salary depending on the amount of work they do. Some producers work on one specific movie or television show at a time, and get paid according to the amount of money brought in by it.

Since most producers work independently, they also are in charge of purchasing their own health insurance and scheduling their own vacation and sick leave time. Producers who are working on a film will rarely be able to take time off during production, and will have to work vacations around their filming schedule.

Producers are people who do their job because they truly love it and are passionate about the film and television industry. The biggest benefit is that most of them have turned their hobby into a career and managed to gain a profit off doing something they truly love.

Where to Go for More Information

Independent Filmmaker Project
68 Jay Street Room 425
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(212) 465-8200

Additional topics

Job Descriptions and Careers, Career and Job Opportunities, Career Search, and Career Choices and ProfilesCommunication and the Arts