Production Coordinator & Art Director – Film Art
In this chapter we discuss production coordinator and art director.
supervises, either on her/his own authority or subject to the authority of an employer (for example a studio or production company); in television, they may also be the creator/writer of a series
initiates, coordinates, supervises and controls, either on their own authority or subject to the authority of an employer, all aspects of the motion-picture and or/ television production process including creative, financial, technological and administrative. They are involved throughout all phases of production from inception to completion, including coordination, supervision and control of all talents and crafts, subject to the provisions of their collective bargaining agreements and personal service contracts.
performs one or more producer functions delegrated to him/her by a producer under supervision of such producer.
interpret others’ words in order to bring a script to life and to put to flesh and blood the characters they portray
responsible for creatively translating the motion picture’s written script into actual images and sounds on screen. They are ultimately responsible for a film’s artistic success and are generally held responsible for a film’s commercial success or failure.
create screenplays for films and television. They provide the blueprint for the creative input of the Producer, Director, Production Designer, Composer, Editor and all other cast and crew.
oversees physical production and manages Unit Production Managers. Ultimately responsible for all aspects of physical below-the-line production including hiring and firing crew rates, union considerations, sag and other guild considerations etc… It is the their responsibility to make sure the filming stays on s
Unit Production Manager
supervises the physical aspects of the production (not the creative aspects) including personnel, technology, budget and scheduling…Also helps manage e day-to-day budget by managing operating costs such as salaries, production costs and everyday equipment rental costs.They must have an accurate daily assessment of where the production stands in terms of costs and budget.
manages all the money that flows in and out of production. They are responsible for pay roll, maximizing tax credits and making sure that all the necessary paperwork is completed correctly for all aspects of production.
is the information nexus of the production. Responsible for organizing all the logistics from hiring crew, renting equipment, and booking talent.
Post Production Coordinator
manages the post production work flow from reception of the production elements through the creation of the post production elements to the final delivery to the studio and or distributor vis a vis the delivery requirements
works with the Producer and Director to create a list of suitable actors for each role and then manages the offers to each of the actors through either direct solicitation or (more often) solicitation via the management and agencies of the actors
helps the casting supervisor in all aspects but especially in managing the scheduling, availabilities and contract needs of each actor approached for the film
First Assistant Director
assists the production manager and the director. In charge of overseeing the day-to-day management of the cast and crew including scheduling, equipment, script, managing the flow of communication between all departments and keeping the actors well taken care of in all aspects. They are ultimately responsible for the safety of all cast and crew members during shooting.
2nd Assistant Director
assists the First in all aspects and is responsible for creating the call sheet every day as well as managing the movement of information on set.
assists the 2nd AD in all aspects and is responsible for managing the movement of information on set and overseeing the PA’s
assists the first assistant director with set operations
also known as “continuity person” keeps track of what parts of the script have been filmed and makes notes of any deviations between what was actually filmed and what appeared in the script
is the foreman of the grip department. Overseas the work and responsibilities of all of the grips on the set. Is in charge of the safety on set as it pertains to the crew and the proper adherence to safe rigging and personal safety protocol.
(sometimes called the chief lighting technician) is the foreman of the lighting department. As much a technical as fully creative position, they are responsible for the design and implementation of the lighting in collaboration and/or under the guidance of the DP.
Best boy grip
assists the key grip but assumes more responsibility for the hiring and scheduling of the crew; overseas the rental of the equipment on the set.
Best boy electric
assistant to the gaffer. Generally responsible for the daily running of the lighting, hiring and scheduling of the crew; coordinating the rigging crews.
operates the camera dollies or camera cranes.
works with the key grip to implement the physical production plan.
works with the gaffer to implement the lighting plan.
works with the director and producer to create the look and feel of the visuals that will be portrayed in the narrative. As a department head they are responsible for the hiring and management of the entire art department team including the art director.
directly overseas artists and craftspeople such as set designers, graphic artists and illustrators who assist in the development of the production design.
a draftsman or architect who realizes the structures and interior spaces called for by the production designer.
work for the set decorator. They are responsible for locating and purchasing or renting the set dressing.
apply and remove the “dressing” (ex: furniture, drapery, carpets, lighting) everything one would find on a particular set
is in charge of finding and managing all of the props required for the shooting of the film
is in charge of all firearms and other props that fall under a weapons category including knives, swords, bow and arrows, etc… They are responsible for the safe use of both non-functioning and blank-firing weapons on set and assure that the production abides by all local, state and federal guidelines regarding use of dangerous weapons.
builds the props that are used for the film. They are often technicians skilled in construction, plastics casting, machining and electronics.
are responsible for the placement of all furniture, drapery, carpeting and all accessories. Most of their work is accomplished before the crew arrives and after they have left the set. Generally, one or more remain on the set during filming.
is responsible for moving all dressing elements from location to location for placement by the set dressers
Art Department PA
assist in any and all aspect of production design under the guidance of their respective production head
overseas the construction of all the sets. The coordinator orders materials, schedules the work, and supervises the (often sizeable) crew of carpenters, painters and laborers.
the foreman of a “gang” of carpenters and laborers.
a specialized set dresser dealing with the artistic arrangement or landscape design of plant material. Sometimes real and sometimes artificial and usually a combination of both
Director of Photography (D.P)
is the head of all technical departments on a film crew and is responsible for establishing how the script is translated into visual images based on the director’s request
Camera Operator (C.O.)
Works closely with the D.P to determine the composition for each shot as instructed by the DP. Their primary job is to execute the DP’s vision for movement and composition but can also communicate directly with the Director when the Director so desires.
First Assistant Cameraman (1st A.C.)
knows and understands all professional motion picture camera equipment and accessories currently used in the industry. They read the script so that they are aware of the story and recommends any special equipment that may be needed to carry out specific shots and is responsible for the overall care and maintenance of all camera equipment during production.
Second Assistant Cameraman (2nd A.C.)
before production, 2nd A.C. Must obtain a supply of empty cans, black bags, camera reports, and cores from the lab or asks the production manager to arrange for these supplies, prepares a list of expendables with the 1st A.C, a/so preps camera package along with the 1st A.C.
acts as an AC and as an intermediate to get the files from the camera department to the DIT, loads and labels cards
DIT (digital imaging technician)
is responsible for the off-loading and backing up of all digital files created
plays a very important role in the overall appearance of the talent, create a look for the talent
prepares the performers scalp and skin and creates hairstyles that suit production requirements
works closely with the Director, the Production Designer and the Producers to develop a look for the characters that best serves the story & works to maintain the visual unity of the production while establishing new costumes and designing looks for new characters.
helps the Designer with research, shopping, rentals and fittings for all characters. On lower budget productions, they may also be responsible for the script breakdown and taking on the duties traditionally handled by the Costume Coordinator/Supervisor.
is responsible for the day-to-day running of the department. They analyze the script breakdown and production schedules to prepare a realistic Costume budget, manufacturing and purchasing schedules and crewing requirements. They handle all the financial records for the Costume Department and are responsible for maintaining the costume budget. They coordinate all labor efforts for pre-production (the build) and the actual shoot.
assists in fitting, alterations and construction of costumes as assigned by the Designer. They may also assist in dressing the Background at the trailers/tents
work directly with producers and director have decided what general scenery is required to meet the creative needs of the project outside of the studio space the search for compatible locations begins. Locations are selected both in terms of the “look” they offer but a/so the feasibility and ease of filming at the particular location
is responsible for making all the practical arrangements necessary for filming on location. Duties include but are not limited to: creating and entering into location contract agreements. creating parking plans for working vehicles, identifying and arranging for power and water sources, working with affected residents, property owners, and businesses.
is the head of the transportation department and is responsible for obtaining and managing all vehicles associated with a production. They also hire and manage the transportation captain and drivers.
is often the first person to arrive on set and the last person to leave. They are in charge of the management and movement of every vehicle associated with production and work under the direct guidance of the coordinator.
Drivers (Teamsters Union)
drive the production vehicles and are responsible to keep all vehicles in safe, clean and working condition.
Special effects supervisor
instructs the sfx crew on how to design moving set elements and props that will safely break, explode, bum, collapse and implode without destroying the film set. S/he is also responsible for reproducing weather conditions and other on-camera magic.
Special effects assistant
carries out the instructions of the special effects supervisor, building set pieces like breakaway furniture and cities in miniature, lighting pyrotechnics, and setting up rigging equipment for stunts.
Visual Effects Supervisor
works with vfx, breaks down the script into storyboards, and advises the director as to how s/he should approach the scenes. Together they determine which sequences are to be shot as live action elements, which would work well in miniature, and which (if any) should be computer generated.
is a visual effects artist responsible for compositing images from different sources such as video, film, conputer generates 3-D imagery, 2-D animations, matte paintings, photographs, and text.
they rotoscope the footage, manually creating mattes for use in compositing. They may also paint visual information into or out of a scene, such removing wires and rigs, logos, dust busting, scratch removal, etc.
draw/paint entire sets or extend portions of an existing set.
build three-dimensional computer models of everything that is needed
an experienced stunt performer, hired by a TV, film or theatre director or production company for stunt casting that is to arrange the casting (stunt players and stunt doub/es) and performance of stunts
is often referred to as a stuntman, stuntwoman, or daredevil, is a trained professi’ona/ who performs stunts
a skilled replacement used for dangerous film or video sequences, in movies and television (such as jumping out of a building, jumping from vehicle to vehicle or similar actions), and for other sophisticated stunts (especially fight scenes)
Second Unit Director
is responsible for shooting supplementary footage; this includes establishing stunts, inserts, and cutaways
is responsible for the operation of the audio Mixer and Recorder(s) which receive feeds from the microphones on set. It is their responsibility to decide how they will deploy their team to capture the sound for each shot, select which microphones will be used for each setup
is responsible for utilising microphones on the end of boom poles (lightweight telescopic poles made of aluminium, or more commonly, carbon fibre) held above actor’s heads during a scene to capture dialogue
refers to the department, which provides food service and beverages to other departments. In addition to policing the set of empty cans and trash, the craft service department provides buffet style snacks and drinks.
Post Production Supervisor
is responsible for the post production process, during which (hey maintain clarity of information and good channels of communication between the producer, director, editor, supervising sound editor, the facilities companies (such as film labs, CGI studios) and the production accountant. It is a pivotal role in ensuring that the film’s post production budget is manageable and achievable, and that all deadlines are met.
works with the raw footage, selecting shots and combines them into sequences which create a finished motion picture
maintains a balanced and structured environment in the editing room. They are responsible for operating the editing technology as well as interacting with various people on the filmmaking staff, particularly the camera. film lab and sound department.
in a photochemical process, they adjusts the color of the film via printer lights for greater consistency in the film’s colors. And in a digital intermediate process, they can use digital in changing the aesthetic of a film.
is responsible for writing the musical score for a film.
works with the composer, mixers and editors to create and integrate the film’s music; they act as liaison between the film production and the recording industry, negotiating the use rights for all source music used in a film.
is in charge of the post-production sound of a movie. Sometimes this may involve great creative license, and other times it may simply mean working with the director and editor to balance the sound to their liking.
is responsible for assembling and editing all the sound effects in the soundtrack.
is responsible for assembling and editing the entire dialog in the soundtrack.
is someone who mixes the final film score.
is the person who creates the post-sync sound effects for a film. These sound effects are recorded in sync to picture and are mostly body movements, footsteps or object manipulations.