Production Managers: The Unsung Heroes Of The Entertainment Industry

production manager in the entertainment industry

Production managers have a huge, yet unheralded, role in the production of TV and Film. (Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

The entertainment industry has diverse job needs, as many people are needed to make up a production. Many people hail the stars of the show. Directors often get a lot of the praise for a successful film or TV show. But one role that doesn’t get as much recognition is Production Management.

Production Managers are there to ensure that everything in a TV, film or stage production goes smoothly. They manage financial matters. They look after the cast and crew. They ensure that everything gets done on time.

It’s a role that’s appreciated behind the scenes, and a career well worth considering. Here are some of the things Production Managers handle.

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Cast And Crew Management

A successful production needs a lot of crew members. For instance, when filming a TV show, it isn’t just the actors who need to be on set. You also need camera operators, sound engineers, security staff, and much more. The production manager makes sure a production goes ahead with all the right crew members.

It’s not always a case of employing in-house staff to handle productions. In the entertainment business, there’s a lot of reliance on contractors. Production managers often turn to a lot of freelancers. They also need to take care of their cast and crew, so health and safety outsourcing is often helpful in this regard.

They ensure that everyone knows the filming schedule and gets the job done. A production is only as good as the people who make it. The production managers act as the cement which brings them all together. They handle paperwork such as call sheets and risk assessments to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Budgeting

Film and television productions often have to work with a specific amount of funding. Every penny has to be spent wisely to ensure the production comes out as well as it possibly can. It’s the production manager’s job to ensure they budget for the production wisely.

It can involve difficult decisions. For instance, they might have to consider whether it’s worth paying a high-profile actor or going with someone else. They also have to deal with the costs of special effects, props, and the use of locations.

They work closely with the director to ensure their vision is fulfilled with the amount of money they have. Sometimes they have to come up with creative solutions. For example, look at some examples of films which made the most of their low budget.

Keeping To Schedule

Productions often have to be done within a deadline. It can be stressful getting everything filmed, edited, and ready to go in a limited time. Production managers have to ensure that everything gets done in ample time.

There can be a lot of challenges involved with scheduling. For instance, a production manager might not have access to an important location until the last week of filming. They have to work around this by rearranging the filming schedule.

It’s a crucial task that ensures a production is completed successfully. They need to book locations, complete paperwork, and consider legal regulations. It’s a lot of hard work to get everything done on time, but it pays off.

Questions about becoming a production manager – add them to the comment section below!

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About Brian Clapp

Brian Clapp has worked in the broadcast media for over 14 years as a writer, editor, producer & news director. After beginning his career in Atlanta at CNN/Sports Illustrated, he switched coasts to Seattle to work at Fox Sports Northwest. In 2010, Brian began pursuing a new found passion on the digital media side, launching a successful website and then taking on the role of Director of Content for WorkinSports.com & WorkinEntertainment.com.

Recently Brian has become addicted to Google+ and LinkedIn so add him to your circles and make him a contact. No seriously, you should.

Comments

  1. Hi Brian,
    I was very impressed by your accolades in the media profession. I enjoy anything linked to the entertainment world. I need to get more involve in this circle I also need a mentor. If I could pick the ideal job it would be in any compacity working with commercials, and Television . I’m willing to work entry level positions in order to advance in the profession. What do you think?

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