What Does Producers and Directors Do?
Producers and directors manage the production of movies, radio, television, video and stage productions. Producers have the final say on creative decisions such as casting, script interpretation and design. They will also secure project funding and handle the marketing side of the production. Directors are more involved with minute creative processes like composition, lighting, acting and sound. Directors work with producers to choose set locations and hold auditions as well.
Producers and Directors Skills and Abilities
Though their jobs are slightly different, directors and producers have many skills and abilities in common. They act as the chief creative forces in any production and are responsible for a myriad of important decisions. To be successful in this field, professionals need these capabilities:
- Critical thinking: Planning productions and taking decisions requires an awareness of multiple creative elements. While being realistic and staying within a budget, producers and directors must find effective solutions to satisfy creative inclinations.
- Coordination: On every production, many groups must function cohesively including sound, costumes, casting, acting, etc. As project managers, these professionals must ensure everyone is working well together.
- Problem sensitivity: In entertainment, anything can and will go wrong, but savvy managers can detect potential issues and fix the source before a problem arises.
- Oral and written comprehension: When working with others, directors and producers must glean understanding from scripts, emails and conversations.
Producers and Directors Duties
Producers and directors are responsible for many tasks during the course of the production. Ultimately, they are accountable for the final product and any related success. Every production is different, but generally, these professionals will:
- Resolve personnel issues: From misunderstandings to egos, directors and producers will ensure all parties work cohesively for the sake of the production.
- Make decisions: Directors will tell actors where to stand and inform the sound engineers of the day’s equipment demands. Producers will make decisions regarding brand endorsements and the productions overall creative direction.
- Working with computers: Many programs exist to help creative individuals plan light shows, create CGI effects and splice audio tracks together. Producers and directors will work closely with these on set and during the editing process.
- Communicating with others: These professionals must work closely with a number of individuals including agents, company representatives, managers, sound engineers and many more.
Producers and Directors Tools and Technology
In the field, professionals can expect to encounter software aimed at creative productivity and delicate mechanical equipment. In a normal career, producers and directors will see:
- Digital audio workstation
- Video editing and creation interfaces
- Photo editing software
- Video cameras
- Camera controllers
- Media control systems
- Word processors
Depending on the production, professionals may encounter more specialized or varied technology.
Education and Training for Producers and Directors
If you plan to enter this profession, you will need at least a bachelor’s degree in a related field like cinematography or film production. Approximately 51 percent of active industry professionals have a bachelor’s degree, 13.9 percent have a master’s degree and 14.8 percent have some college. You will need some field experience, but less than 5 years is standard for the industry.
Producers and Directors Salary
Most directors and producers do fairly well with a national median salary of about $69,100, while the top ten percent make upwards of $187,200 annually. These averages vary across state lines. For example, New York professionals make a median wage of $95,100 and Californians can expect $93,400.
Producers and Directors Jobs by Geography
In terms of number of working professionals, California and New York lead the pack with 29,100 and 20,110 working professionals respectively. However, Utah, Washington and Colorado have the largest market growth with upwards of 20 percent project growth by 2022.