Television Producer – Everything You Need To Know

A television producer is in charge of one or more areas of a television show’s video production. For example, some producers play a more executive role in developing new programs and proposing them to television networks. In television, the producers wear the hats of creative and administrative functions, with “writer” as one of the facets. On the other hand, an executive producer is the “head writer.” 

TV Producers focus on financial issues like budgets and contracts. Other producers are more hands-on with the day-to-day operations, helping with screenwriting, set design, casting, and directing, among other things.

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On a television show, there are many different producers. In traditional television, a producer is someone who handles a show’s money and schedule, although this is no longer the case.

Video: What is a Television Producer?

 

Role of a Television Producer

A TV Producer’s job description includes a variety of responsibilities. He works on the project from the beginning stages and goes through the hoops to review it. Writing a:

  • Treatment
  • Pilot
  • Logline and 
  • Putting together a pitch to the network 

are all part of this process. Here we will cover how a TV Producer may take a TV show idea from start to conclusion.

Video: Developing a TV Show

Developing the Initial Treatment: Before considering a greenlight, network executives frequently demand to see a finished pilot screenplay. In other circumstances, people are only interested in seeing a treatment. The treatment provides a synopsis of the idea to any possible purchasers or investors.

Video: Writing Treatment for TV Show


Sketching Engaging Characters: Audiences may be drawn to your program because of the story or the actors involved, but they must fall in love with the characters to commit to the series.

One of the TV Producer’s responsibilities is to ensure that character growth occurs from episode to episode. This work must begin early to ensure that your characters have that potential.

Video: Creating Characters

Designing and Writing the Pilot: The pilot allows the treatment’s loosely formed concept to become something recognizable in script form. Weiss and Benioff, as previously said, scripted Game of Thrones pilot and took on the monumental challenge of converting George R.R. Martin’s dense fantasy novel into episodic television.

The pilot episode is crucial in establishing the tone and direction of the entire series. In other words, you are not simply creating a single episode of television; you’re building the groundwork for whole seasons.

Video: Writing a Pilot Episode

Writing the Perfect Logline: A logline is a brief (typically one sentence) summary of your entire pilot. We will not go into great depth about writing a logline in this article, but it necessitates familiarity with the rules and plenty of practice.

With dozens of new ideas swirling about Hollywood at any time, it’s easy to see why crafting a logline that cuts through the clutter is vital.

Writing a logline appears to be a simple task – after all, how tough is it to compose a sentence? However, it is so challenging to write the perfect logline that we dedicated an entire episode of our TV Writing and Development workshop to it.

Video: Writing a Logline

Generating a Show Bible: You’ve written a treatment, a pilot, and a logline so far, but there is one more thing you need to finish: the show bible. When converting a concept into a TV show, networks must think ahead.

They are not just committing to one episode but a number of them. Is the pilot, even if it is a brilliant concept, viable? The show bible sets out the long-term potential of this concept.

Video: Designing a Show Bible

Presenting the Perfect Pitch: Even though a TV Producer “runs the show,” they must first sell the concept to a network. This is the point at which the pitch is made. Next, the producer sets out their whole idea for the show using their treatment and/or pilot, the show bible, and the logline.

But here is the catch: a fantastic concept must be conveyed, where understanding the pitch process comes in handy. You’ve probably heard the expression “good in the room,” which refers to how well you communicate a concept and the idea itself.

Video: How to Pitch?

 

Different Types of Producers

In today’s industry, there are several sorts of producers, as follows in terms of importance:

Showrunner: The showrunner is the “chief executive” in control of all aspects of the show’s production. It is the highest-ranking individual in charge of the show’s production and day-to-day operations. They also supervise the writing room in fictional television.

Executive Producer: Even after they leave the project, established show creators with prior writing credits are frequently awarded the position of executive producer. Showrunners, head writers, the head of a production firm, or a long-time writer for the program can all be executive producers. 

Co-Executive Producer: are close in rank to the executive producers. They serve as “chief operations officers,” overseeing above and below-the-line personnel. They have also made substantial contributions to fictitious shows’ writing room, including table reads, conversations, and/or edits. In addition, the co-executive producer may write scripts.


Supervising Producer: These producers help in the creative process of fictional shows by participating in table discussions, assisting with screenplay rewrites, and mentoring new writers. In addition, they are frequent series directors who supervise other directors on reality shows.

Producer: A producer on a fictitious program may not have written the episode but can significantly contribute through table reads, conversations, and/or changes. They could also be a previous executive producer who continues writing for the program but has lost their executive producer responsibilities. The credit “produced by” is given to producers in charge of production logistics.

Co-Producer:  A co-producer on a fictitious program may not have authored the episode but made significant contributions through table reads, conversations, and/or changes.

Coordinating Producer: The term is only used when the crew is working on many shows simultaneously. In this case, the producer organizes their numerous responsibilities and assigns them to teams.

Producer of Content: As a content producer, you will have the opportunity to work on a show that is continuously evolving, such as a television show or radio program, with a creative team that is eager to try new ideas.

Consulting Producer: For the series, they consult on specific issues. These producers are occasionally previous executive producers or directors who no longer work on the show but are recruited to consult on it. In addition, they are frequently requested to assist the writers.

Despite their day-to-day presence being no different from any other writer on staff, many television series with a big in-house writing team will usually have a few authors granted the designation of consulting producer. In these circumstances, the agreement reached with the writer falls short of their requirements to be given one of the titles ranging from co-producer to executive producer.

Associate Producers perform various activities and duties. At the showrunner’s request, he commits any of the producer’s job obligations.  

Assistant Producers gather contributors and tales for the reality show.

Chase Producer: Locates and schedules (or “chases”) guests for news and talk show interviews.

Segment Producer: Writes a single segment for a reality show.

Line Producer: Under the charge of the unit production manager, these producers hire people and oversee their compensation. Most line producers are also in charge of production logistics and are given the “produced by” moniker. 

Field Producer: Only on reality shows. Selects filming locations (outside of a television studio) and coordinates stories for field production. They also establish a trustworthy relationship with the cast and participants to obtain interviews while on location. They could work as a production manager/coordinator, videographer, or production assistant, among other things. 

Edit Producer: Working with the editor and relaying information from other producers, Edit Producers assist in the coordination of the edit. Involved in story development and, if necessary, scriptwriting.

Post-Production Producer: An executive producer rarely has operational authority over a show on live television or “as-live.” Their role is to take a step back from the show’s functional components and evaluate it as if they were a regular spectator.

The executive producer is always allowed to remark on a rough cut in film or video projects. Still, the attention paid to their opinions is heavily reliant on the production’s overall staff structure.

Video: A Day in the Life of a Television Producer

 

Skills Required to Become a Television Producer

The following skills are required to become a television producer:

Management Skills: Producers must hire and manage a program’s director, talent, and crew, as well as guarantee that everyone works well together.

Communication Skills: As a broadcast program requires many various sorts of individuals, both on and off the set, a producer must be able to successfully communicate ideas to employees and promote the program to the media.

Creative abilities: Excellent storytelling abilities are required to create an effective program that captivates viewers.

Troubleshooting Abilities: Producers must be able to fix any production or personnel concerns that arise rapidly.

Financial Skills: Producers must have strong financial management skills because they are the project’s purse-string holder.

Business Skills: Business savvy is essential because a producer is solely responsible for a project’s success.

Video: Television Producer 101

 

Salary of a Television Producer

The salary of a television producer varies greatly. According to PayScale, the average annual salary is around $67,000. However, the larger the compensation, the bigger the studio. For example, TV producers at the Discovery Channel make about $82,000 per year, while those at NBCUniversal Media, LLC. make around $105,000.

Video: Salary of Television Producer


Conclusion

Though becoming a television producer appears to be a long and arduous procedure for pay that, while not negligible, is easily eclipsed by other occupations that need less time and provide less career ambiguity, those who do it do so for a purpose. Therefore, being a TV producer will always have more benefits than drawbacks if it is what you want to do, even if the product isn’t well-received.

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