What A Producer Does
September 16, 2008 Leave a comment
I was preparing a form today for funding – the production is a TV Mini-Seriesand there was a very specific definition of how to define “The Producer”. This is a big deal on the credits and sometimes it has to be shared (or, sold). So, this particular funder has a precise definition of a producer (note that millions has been funded by this particular agency, so it has some authority in real life situations).
Here it is:
The producer controls and is the central decision maker in respect of the production from beginning to end. The producer is normally involved in and is ultimately responsible for:
- the acquisition and/or meaningful development of the story;
- the commissioning of the writing of the screenplay/series bible;
- the selection, hiring and firing of the key artists and creative personnel;
- the preparation, revision and final approval of the budget;
- all overages;
- the binding of the production company to talent and crew contracts;
- the arranging of the production financing;
- the supervision of the filming/taping and post-production; final creative control (as per contract);
- production expenditures (as per contract);
- production bank accounts (sole and unfettered cheque signing authority); and,
- the arranging of the commercial exploitation of the production.
Cool, huh? I think you could argue that one of the lines didn’t include either/both money and/or legal matters – that’s #8 – but, try to have creative control without knowing money/legal matters and … oops, no fun.
Knowing how to think with the money and a few legal forms can take you a long way as a producer.