If you work in the film industry, or even if your dreams are to work there one day, you know it all begins with a producer. Whether it is an animated film, a documentary, or a whacky comedy, there is at least one producer involved in each and every one of the films you have ever watched. Here are some of the many jobs a producer does. After you read through the list, you can see why people say it all begins with a producer.
A producer is in charge of hiring writers, managers, directors, key crew, department heads, major talent, and almost anyone else needed for the production of a film to succeed. If there is more than one producer involved, there are often meetings to assign roles and discuss important topics such as which star would be good for which role.
One of the most difficult tasks for any producer is the set and project budgeting. Although there will almost always be unforeseen costs that arise on a set, the main budget for personnel, equipment rental, stage time, and lighting must be determined long before the film can begin. The budget must also include food, costume design, music production, and location costs.
Although producers often purchase the rights to a project long before beginning the film, funding can sometimes be a problem. Heather Parry sought out investors, ask for studio money, and added her personal funds to get ‘A Star Is Born’ created – which turned out to be a wildly successful endeavor.
With so much money at stake from so many different sources, it is no wonder the producer is the backbone of the entire operation when a film is being created. Overseeing every possible contingency during the script workup, filming, and editing, the producer knows everything there is to know about his or her film. It all may begin with a producer, but it also ends when the producer says the film is done.