The part of production where being Dr. Phil and knowing how to juggle could come in handy.
Like the best-laid plans of mice and men or every Bond villain’s evil scheme, productions never seem to work out as intended. However, the main job of the producer is to make it all run smoothly. Sometimes, this requires acting as the babysitter for the production – a babysitter who also happens to have multiple advanced degrees in psychology. Other times, this means having psychic powers and MacGyver-like abilities to figure a way out of impossible situations. Oh yeah, it also helps if you’re able to laugh while everything falls to pieces.
Sometimes, the fires on set will be figurative, but they also can be literal. A good fire extinguisher will do for the real flames; everything else requires the work of a general problem solver who’s equally skilled at damage control.
TOPICS COVERED IN THE FIXER:
- TENDING TO THE PEOPLE
- SCHEDULE REVISIONS
Production is when most of that money you’ve raised is needed. Despite all the math and science that goes into making the budget, costs will likely exceed the estimates. The producer needs to keep an eye on expenses, but also stay cool and collected when the project starts to go over the budget. Figure out what is costing more than planned, then keep all the stakeholders informed – and if you have to make compromises, find a middle ground between the financiers and the creative side of the production.
TOPICS COVERED IN REALITY CHECK:
- COST REPORT
- SCHEDULE REVISIONS
Have we mentioned that things always go wrong in production? Murphy’s Law might not be true in all cases, but it definitely applies to film shoots. Some of these issues you can foresee, but others will simply come out of nowhere. Plan for everything, but don’t be shocked when the unforeseen obstacles occur – and maybe keep a few extra dollars hidden in a shoebox somewhere safe to help deal with these unpleasant surprises.
TOPICS COVERED IN THE UNFORESEEN:
- SCRIPT CHANGES
- RAIN OR SHINE
Intelligence, experience and patience are all good traits in a producer. When it comes to planning for what can go wrong, the benefit of experience can’t be replaced. As many problems as there are that can’t be prevented, there are still a lot of common issues that productions face over and over again. Because as much creativity as you need to deal with the on-set drama, the on-screen drama is a better use of that energy.
TOPICS COVERED IN THE FORESEEN:
- PRODUCTION REPORTS
- PLANNING AHEAD
- CREATIVE REALITY CHECK
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