Film Production Crew: Who Does What?

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It takes a lot of work to get a movie from script to screen. In this case, a film production crew works together to create a masterpiece and ensure that the film they create is just like what they’re expected to be.

So, it makes sense if we say that film-making is all about collaboration.

If you’ve ever made a mini-movie for school projects or any other occasion, you’ll understand that watching a film crew at work on a film set may seem like you are watching a train wreck happening, so many of them with so many things to do. As production gets larger, you will need more people to handle various aspects.

Whether you’re working with a small crew or big crew for a film-making project, there’s a hierarchy of who reports to who when making a film — just like any other job.

In this post, we’ll break down some essential roles in film production to see all the jobs that will need to get done eventually:

#1. Producer

At the top of the list… Well, that would be the producer. You can say that this person is the leader of the group.

A producer is a mastermind behind the film. So, it should be assumed that they’re more big picture people. Typically, the producer is the one who owns the film unless they’re working on behalf of a studio.

If you’re a producer, one of the most significant roles you’re responsible for might be coordinating all the film-making processes to ensure that everyone involved in the project is on track, matching with schedule and budget.

#2. Director

Directors are most likely picked by the producer to represent the creative aspects of the film. It’s the director’s role to tell the story and oversee everything with respect to their vision of how the finished film should look like.

If the film is based on a novel, the director should compare the novel’s author as a primary visionary film.

Even if the director has a key role in the story and works at the center of film production, they still need numerous people who get the job together.

#3. Screenwriter

The screenwriter creates and shapes an original story, adapts a book, plays, or works on the film. They are also responsible for all the dialog that is said on the big screen and ensure that the story will unfold logically in an intriguing way.

Since they have to write everything before the first day of shooting, they’re more specifically the pre-production crew. Most screenwriters spend most of their time working with producers and directors to make sure that the plot, storylines, and dialogs all make sense.

#4. Set Designer

The first person that translates the script into visual form is the set designer. They are also integrating production requirements, including script, storyboard, budget, and available locations, to improve the design.

Most of the time, they are also involved in storyboarding to get the script’s pre-visualization and make changes and corrections as directed. After getting some insights from the storyboard, they direct and coordinate set construction and selects furniture and other props for decorative quality and appearance.

#5. Art Director

The art director (or production designer) is responsible for designing and supervising the construction of sets for a movie.

Since they have to deal with the buildings, architecture, and interior, they should have a solid understanding of art and design skills. The art director mostly communicates and works a lot with the cinematographer to achieve the right picture or look for the film.

#6. Costume Designer

Costume designers play a key role in contributing to the overall look of the film. The costumes they create and design present the film’s time period. It can also convey a huge deal about the characters’ economic status, attitude, and more.

#7. Director of Photography

The director of photography or DP (also called cinematographer) mostly deals with lighting and the camera’s technical capabilities. Their jobs include capturing visuals from the script on film. In other words, they create the look of the film.

They direct the lighting for each scene, choose the right footage, chooses the best lenses, etc. They also ensure that the visual look of the film aligns with the director’s vision.

#8. Lighting Director

The lighting director is responsible for the lighting setups of the production. Whether they want to create scenes with shiny bright or dimly lit with only one small lamp or even candle, they’re in charge.

Complementing the tone and accentuating the mood with lightning represent the lighting director’s job description’s biggest part. They direct lighting cues and mostly work with directors of photography to carry out the director’s vision.

#9. Audio Technician

Audio technicians are responsible for recording the music, voices, and background noise on TV. Other than that, they also check all the audio elements of the film.

They have to make sure that the sound or audio they make can improve the visuals’ quality and build a certain emotion.

#10. Editor

After the film is shot and the footage is captured with the production crew, it’s time to put it together. And the person that is in charge of this is the editor.

It’s the editor’s choice to choose which shots make it to the big screen and the order in which to place them. In this case, they need to deal with a lot of video editing tools!

They need to make sure that the film storyline is like what it’s written on the script and storyboard. The editor can also add some effects on the scenes to improve the film’s overall visual look.

#11. Actor

If others work behind the scenes, the actors and actresses work on-screen. They portray the characters in a film. Their job is much more than reciting the lines from the scripts. They need to deliver the message of the movie through their dialogs, expressions, even movements. They work closely with the director.

There you have it! That has been some of the most crucial roles of some essential teams in film production.

If you have another cool job description of another team or person in a film production that we haven’t mentioned above, feel free to leave a comment below!

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