The Offline Editor does the same job as a Film Editor using equipment such as, Final Cut Pro, Avid or Lightworks in a non-linear editing suite. The digital revolution has made the offline editing process very fast as editors moved from time-consuming linear (tape to tape) suites, to computer hardware and software. Typically, all the original footage is digitised into the suite at a low resolution. The Editor and Director are then free to work with all the options to create the final cut.
The Online Editor looks after the final master edit. After conforming the film or television programme from the edit created in the offline suite, the Online Editor will add visual effects, titles, and apply color correction. This process is typically supervised by Director and sometimes the Director of Photography. If working on a programme for television, the editor will also ensure that the it meets the technical delivery specs of the broadcaster, ensuring proper video levels, aspect ratio, and blanking width.
Painters work for the Production Design Department and paint the sets constructed in the studio. They can also apply special finishes which can create the look of a range of materials such as wood, metal, plaster, stone etc, all on a basic wood or plaster set.
A passport is a document, issued by a national government, which certifies, for the purpose of international travel, the identity and nationality of its holder. If a production involves working abroad arrangements must be made to ensure all the crew have valid passports and visa.
A Picture Researcher finds still photographs, pictures from magazines and archive film footage which can be featured on screen or can be used for reference purposes when designing a set or props.
The Plasterer working in film production is a skilled craftsman, with traditional solid plastering abilities, such as applying plaster and cement textures to walls, and fixing ornamental plasterwork. They can create textured surfaces on an otherwise flat piece of set, simulating the look of concrete, rock, metal and other surfaces. They must also be skilled fibrous Plasterers, able to make complex moulds and model casts from solid plaster or fibreglass.
The Playback Operator is part of the camera department and records the pictures from the Video Assist on the camera. The Video Assist is a small video camera which relays the camera view of the scene and when shooting this is recorded and later played-back as a mean of checking the take and deciding what adjustments should be made on the next take. When shooting a film with a lot of visual effects, the Playback Operator can play test CGI shots and mix them with the view from the camera to help the later compositing of the live action with the CGI.
Post Production Assistant
The Post Production Assistant works with the Post Production Supervisor and generally looks after the admin side of the Post Production Supervisors work. Liaising with other post production staff including editors, sound editors, online and colour grading facilities, and visual effects facilities, they help ensure the whole post production process works seamlessly to bring the production in on time.
Post Production Coordinator
The Post Production Coordinator works on many facets of the post production process, including ensuring the smooth operation of the editorial department, coordinating the production and delivery of final delivery elements, scheduling and coordinating ADR sessions, managing the administration of the department including post production accounting and final delivery paperwork, organizing final post production related documents, and coordinating the final wrap and proper storage of final video and audio masters and offline editorial materials.
Post Production Producer
Also known as the Post Production Supervisor, they oversee the entire post production of a project. They report directly to the Producer and/or the studio in charge of the feature. Working side by side with the Director and the Editor the Supervisor has the responsibility of finishing the film on time and on budget while satisfying the vision of the Director. Post Production Supervisors have authority over Post Production Coordinators. They role includes supervising all activities with visual effects houses, sound facilities, inserts, ADR, reshooting, CGI, score, delivery requirements to domestic and international distributors, legal clearances, preview screenings, color timing, video mastering and budgeting the movie through the completion and delivery.
Post Production Script
The Post Production Script is prepared when the film is completed. It looks similar in layout to the shooting script but is a precise record of the finished film and includes all dialogue and shot descriptions.
Post Production Supervisor
Post Production Supervisors are responsible for the entire breadth of the post production process, during which they maintain clarity of information and good channels of communication between the Producer, Editor, Supervising Sound Editor, the Facilities Companies (such as film labs, CGI studios and negative cutters) and the Production Accountant. Their role is vital in ensuring that the film's Post Production budget is manageable and achievable, and that all deadlines are met.
The Press Officer is a senior advisor who provides advice on how to deal with the news media and, using news management techniques, helps the production maintain a positive public image and avoid negative media coverage.
Producers are highly self-motivated individuals, who have the final responsibility for all aspects of a film's production. He or she is frequently the first person to become involved in a project; they may have found the script or optioned a book and then an adaptation. They hire everyone from Director to cast and all the Heads Of Department. They see the project through production, to post production, marketing and distribution. The Producer's role is to turn story ideas into profitable cinematic entertainment, and to persuade others to share in his or her commercial and creative vision. Producers usually report to the production company, or to the Executive Producers appointed to supervise the production on behalf of the financiers and Distributors.
The Producer's Assistant is a highly competent administrator who works closely with the Producer throughout the production process, from script development and pre-production through to marketing and distribution. They are well organised, highly flexible, and possess a good overview of the film production process. They occupy a position, which offers great insight into the film making process, and this role should not be confused with that of a Production Assistant. Indeed, a Producer's Assistant is sometimes credited as Associate Producer.
Producer / Director
The Producer/Director will devise and produce original, innovative and entertaining programme ideas or treatments which are feasible, in genre, and meet programming objectives. During production their primary responsibilities are directing the crew and supervising editing. They will also supervise and coordinates all phases of audio and video production. They may also be Camera Operators, shooting with small, high definition cameras as well as recording sound with radio mics.
The Production Accountant is responsible for managing finances and maintaining financial records during film production. They work closely with the Producer and the production office in the preparation of schedules and budgets, as well as managing the day-to-day accounting office functions, payroll and reporting the projects' financial progress against the budgets.
Production Assistant - Film
Production Runners are the foot soldiers of the production team, performing small but important tasks in the office, around the set and on location. Their duties may involve anything from office administration to crowd control, and from public relations to cleaning up locations. (see Runner)
Production Assistant - Television
In television the Production Assistant has a variety of roles depending on whether the programme is studio based or a documentary or drama. With studio based programmes, the Production Assistant has various admin roles within the production office, working for the Producer and Director. They also prepare the script for the studio and liaise with all the design, make-up and facility departments. In the gallery, the Production Assistant will call shots if required and keep timings of each section of a recorded show to make sure the final show comes out at the required length.
On a documentary, the Production Assistant will be involved in organising travel and accommodation, preparing shooting schedules, organizing call sheets for crew and others involved. On location they will generally help out to make sure everything goes smoothly. In post production they're involved in clearing music and library footage and in preparing the Programme As Completed documents.
The Production Buyer provides support for the Set Decorators in sourcing and buying or hiring props and dressing materials. They also monitor and control the set decorating budget. Even on small budget films, there are many objects that must be seen or used for example, furniture, pictures, books, etc., in order for the scene to appear realistic.
The Production Coordinator is directly responsible to the Line Producer and Production Manager for scheduling and coordinating the day-to-day workings of the whole production team. They co-ordinate the crew, maintain the purchase order log, make sure paperwork is completed and filed, and also produce new versions of the script pages as changes are made.
The Production Electrician is the Lighting Designer's number one assistant. Every lighting team works in a different way, but generally the Production Electrician helps the Lighting Designer draw the plan and working out patching arrangements, carries out the gel call, rigs and gels all the lights, helps with the focus and programming of the lighting board during the plot and other general issues.
The Production Executive in television, is a senior position within a department, primarily concerned with the overall business operations of a number of programmes or series. They are responsible to the Head Of Department and the Head Of Business Affairs.
The Production Manager works within every genre in television production including documentaries, current affairs, light entertainment or children's programmes, situation comedies, soaps or serial dramas, or one off dramas. They are responsible for all the organisational aspects of production scheduling and budgeting. They assist Producers to interpret and realise the Director's vision, both financially and logistically.
In Film production, the Production Manager works alongside the Line Producer and organizes the day-to-day operations involved in the production. They deal with all departments and keep track of what's happening during the shooting day to make sure it all goes according to schedule.
Production Office Vehicles / Trailers
When shooting on location, members of the production office, Location Manager, and 2nd Assistant Director work from portable office taken to the location. Here they have all the facilities they would have at the studio to enable them to organize and coordinate location shooting.
The offices at the studio where production staff and design staff work.
The Production Secretary works for the Production Manager, taking care of the general admin in the production office.
Programme as Completed
The Programme As Completed or P as C, is a document prepared by the Production Assistant at the completion of a television programme. It contains details of all music and library footage used as well as the names of cast, their agents, the names of other contributors and their contact details etc. Everything that someone in the future might need to get specific information about the programme.
Props are defined as items which are handled directly by Actors. These are bought or hired by the Prop Buyer as specified by the Set Decorator and Prop Master.
A company that provides the TV and Film industries with props from many periods. Some companies specialise in collections of props from very specific periods or collections of specific types of props.
The Prop Maker works in the Properties Departments of feature films, making any props that are not being bought or hired. Prop Makers use a wide variety of materials, techniques and tools, to design and create props which can represent a huge range of objects, including 'stunt' props (which are replicas of other props, like a police truncheon, but made of soft materials), and specialised objects that move or light up. They may also adapt or modify props that have been bought or hired.
The Property Master, also know as Props Master, controls all aspects of the Property Department. They oversee, and are responsible for the hiring of props, and the inventory, care and maintenance of all props associated with the production ensuring that they are available on time. They also ensure that selected props suit the film's style and overall design, and that they accurately reflect the production's time period and culture. Property Masters oversee the staff, and the smooth running, of the Property Department, working to high standards of accuracy and detail. As much of the work involved is administrative, the role is often office based. Property Masters are responsible to Production Designers, and work as part of the Art Department.
The Props Storeman organises the transport, installation, storage and return of all props for film productions. Props Storemen are recruited onto the production two to four weeks prior to the shoot, and work with Property Master, Production Buyer, and Props Drivers. Immediately before the shoot, Props Storemen liaise with the Dressing and Standby Props teams. Props Storemen work under pressure, to strict deadlines, and they carry a great deal of responsibility. Their job involves planning, scheduling and organising, and requires scrupulous attention to detail to ensure everything is where it needs to be when it's needed.
Puppeteers bring puppets to life in order to make them perform and interpret scripts with the same degree of integrity as Actors. They work with a variety of different puppets, including hand puppets, stringed puppets (marionettes), puppets that are life size - or bigger, animatronics, etc. To make the puppets more believable, there is usually an element of caricature in their performance which is an interactive process, requiring the audience to use their imagination to bring the puppets to life. Most Puppeteers are expected to be able to work across all the disciplines of Film, Television and Theatre.
A Pyrotechnician works within the Special Effects department and is a specialist in various types of explosive effects. These can range from small bullet hits to blowing up vehicles or whole buildings. A lot of their work involves testing effects before going to the location to make sure it is what the Director wants and by working in conjunction with the Stunt Coordinator, to make sure it's safe.
The Questions Consultant researches and writes questions for television game shows.
See Dubbing Mixer.
On cranes such as the Technocrane, Jimmy Jib and other long reach slimline cranes, the camera is mounted on a multi-axis head which is remotely controlled by the Camera Operator. It can be controlled in all axis, pan, tilt, and rotate and also functions with focus and zoom control. In this setup, one person usually controls movement of the jib whilst another operates the remote head using a control box.
A Reporter is a type of journalist who researches and presents information on television and radio. Reporters gather their information in a variety of ways, including tips of money, press releases, personal sources (individuals with newsworthy information) and witnessing events. They perform research through interviews, public records, and other sources. Reporters generally split their time between working in a newsroom and going out to witness events or interview people.
A Researcher works across all genres of television production, including news, sport, current affairs, documentaries and factual programmes, children's, soaps or serial dramas, and one off dramas. They research and check facts and procedures already in scripts and for interview based programmes, write 'notes' on contributors for on-screen presenters. They must understand, and work within, relevant legislation and regulations.
Researcher / AP
The Researcher/Assistant Producer works on news, current affairs and documentary programmes. Their tasks may include researching and editing library footage, researching location shoots, setting up and researching outside broadcasts, archive research, and finding contributors and subject experts. They will brief contributors on location or in the studio, and keep abreast of current events so as to be able to pitch ideas for forthcoming programmes.
The role of Runner is the accepted entry-level position within the film industry, in either production or post production. Many highly successful Directors, Producers and Technicians began their careers as Runners. Within the industry, the role of Runner is viewed as basic, on-the-job training. Runners may be asked to do anything on the set or location to aid the progress of the shoot. This can make the Runners' role more varied than any of the other job roles, although the nature of the tasks they are set may seem menial, and are often tasks that no-one else has the time to complete. A number of Runners may be employed on larger productions. Floor Runners are usually supervised and instructed by Assistant Directors.
At the end of each day's shooting the camera negative has to be delivered to the lab for developing as soon as possible, so as to be ready for the rushes screening the next day. The Rushes Courier picks up the film from the studio or location and delivers it to the lab as soon as possible.
When a television series like a soap or a sitcom is recorded in a studio, they may record two or three episodes a week with a variety of sets. The sets that are not in use at the time are stored in a warehouse or nearby Scenery Dock, from where they can be transported back to the studio as required.
Scenery is constructed of large, flat walls, known as 'flats', made of wood and supported in the studio by wooden stays. It's designed to be easily assembled and dismantled. Transporting scenery to and from the studio requires large, high trucks to accommodate the size of the many 'flats' as they're taken to and from the scenery storage area.
Scenery is designed and constructed in a scenic workshop which is often overseen by a shop foreman or master carpenter. The staff of a scenic workshop are known as Scenic Carpenters, but within that there are many specialties such as plasterers, welders, and scenic stitchers. Scenic painting is a separate aspect of scenic construction, but often takes place in the scenic workshop.
Scenic Operative (Show working)
The Scenic Operative is part of a team of people who work in a television studio assembling the parts of the set as they come in from the scenery store. They also change sets around during the shoot, taking out walls to allow for camera access etc, and when the shoot is completed, they dismantle the sets ready to get out of the studio.
Scenic Painter (Stand By)
Scenic Painters paint backdrops, murals and many other elements on film sets. Working to briefs set by the Production Designer, they are usually highly trained artists, with an art school background, or they may have trained as Scenic Artists for theatre productions. The role requires excellent artistic skills, combined with the ability to work independently, accurately and to deadlines.
Scenic Supervisor (Show working)
The Scenic Supervisor is the person in charge of the team of Scenic Operatives, and plans the timing for the construction of the sets so that the required sets are ready for the schedule of the shooting day.
The Script Coordinator works on the production of a film or television series. They're responsible for producing each draft of the script and annotating it for ease of use for the production team. On a television series the script coordinator is responsible for liaising between the writing and production departments. The writers deliver the first draft of a script to the script coordinator who prepares it for the production team and handles any clearance issues, checking the script for potential legal problems and ensure that all names are cleared by the legal department.
Script Development Executive
The Script Development Executive, works in film and television drama and comedy. They seek out interesting screenwriters and stories, develop screenplays for production, and manage their company's development slate. They discover projects with artistic and commercial potential and use their in-depth knowledge of the international market for films, and of changing audience tastes to determine the likely success of a script. They also use their contacts and skills to recruit teams of Screenwriters, Script Editors and Directors with the talent and experience to transform the initial premise into a compelling screenplay.
The Script Editor provides a critical overview of the script as it develops and liaises between the Producer or Development Executive and the Screenwriter. Script Editors do not offer solutions, but instead use their analytical skills to help Screenwriters identify problems, explain the potential consequences of Screenwriters' choices, and thereby help to strengthen and develop screenplays.
A Script Reader must have specific skills in analysing screenplays. They evaluate original scripts submitted for production and make recommendations about whether the project should be considered or otherwise.
Script Supervisors work as part of the Camera Department on Feature Films and Television Dramas. They ensure that, despite the fact that films are shot entirely out of script sequence, they eventually make continuous verbal and visual sense. This entails carefully observing the Actors during each take and keeping detailed records of dialogue, action, costumes, props and set design, to make sure everything is done the same in each new angle of the same scene, so that when different takes and scenes are finally edited together, the fictional world of the film is not disrupted by continuity errors which may distract the audience. Script Supervisors are involved during pre-production and principal photography.
The Script Writer or Screenwriter, is responsible for creating and researching the story, developing the characters, narrative, writing the screenplay, and delivering it, in the required format, to Development Executive. Screenwriters therefore have great influence over the impact of the screenplay and of the finished film. They are almost always freelancers who either pitch original ideas to Producers in the hope that they will be optioned or sold, or who are commissioned by a Producer to create a screenplay from a concept, true story, existing screenwork or literary work, such as a novel, poem, play, comic book or short story.
Screenwriting is emotionally and intellectually demanding, and requires an in-depth understanding of human behavior, visual storytelling, and of the different ways that films affect audiences. Many more screenplays are commissioned than films are made, and only a very few top UK Screenwriters make enough money to sustain themselves entirely through writing screenplays. Screenwriters sometimes write in teams, and an additional Screenwriter may be recruited onto a project by the Producer to improve one or more aspects of the work. This additional Screenwriter may share a screenwriting credit with the original Screenwriter, or otherwise be credited for Additional Dialogue, or as a Story Consultant. In some cases the original Screenwriter may be replaced entirely by another Screenwriter, in which case the original Screenwriter may then receive a "Original Story by..." credit on the finished film.
Sculptors on a film production, design and create special features, such as statues or complex props. Working closely with Production Designers or Props Masters, they use a variety of different materials, such as polystyrene foam or clay, to transform design ideas into reality. Many Sculptors have a background in Fine Arts, and they must be creative and imaginative, able to work independently, and to tight deadlines.
Working in the costume department, The Seamstress is the person who makes the original costumes, or makes alterations to costumes bought or hired.
Security guards are often employed to protect film sets and studios.
The Senior Producer on a television series is both a managerial and creative role. In the early stages of production the Senior Producer is responsible for hiring staff and negotiating with suppliers of technical resources. During production, they also have to coordinate and guide the activities of their staff in the most effective performance of their individual roles to be serve the requirements of the programme.
Senior Production Electrician (Gaffer)
On a major documentary or current affairs series, the Senior Researcher, responsible to the Series Producer, will supervise and guide the work of the researchers to ensure everyone is working towards the overall themes and story of the series.
The Series Producer has the overall responsibility for making the series happen. Both a creative and managerial role, their job involves selecting the production team and presenters, to guiding and motivating them throughout the whole production process.
They will approve the Director's proposed outline for a programme in the series and oversee the progress of each programme during the production period, working with the Directors and researchers. During editing, they will have a number of viewings of each programme, suggesting notes for improvement.
The Set Decorator provides anything and everything that furnishes and dresses a film set. From lumps of sugar and teaspoons, to newspapers, furniture and drapes, to cars, carriages, or even cats and dogs. There are two types of Props, Action Props, that is props that are described in the shooting script and are used by the Actors. And, dressing props, or items that help to bring characters to life or to give a certain atmosphere and sense of period to a place.
The person responsible for translating a production designer's vision of the film's environment into a set which can be used for filming. The set designer reports to the art director.
A person who maintains the set according to the Set Decorator's requirements, placing elements such as curtains and paintings, and moving and resetting the set decoration to accommodate camera, grip and lighting setups. Responsible for the continuity of the set in collaboration with the script supervisor and property master.
During the production of a documentary and before editing begins, the tapes shot each day are viewed and the content noted down. The person doing this uses the BITC (Burnt In Timecode) to accurately list the content of each tape to make the job of the editor and Director easier and faster, as they will have a list to indicate the location of any scenes they're looking for.
In sports programmes, Producers are always looking for ways to present dramatic and exciting footage of events. In programmes featuring Ski events, the Ski Cameraperson, is also a competent skier, as they're job is to ski alongside the featured skiers, while shooting with a video camera. The pictures they get can either be relayed back by radio link or recorded in camera.
TV Sound Assistants work closely with TV Sound Supervisors and TV Boom Operators to help record the best quality sound in studios, or on locations. Sound Assistants are the third members of the Production Sound Crew and provide general back up and support to the Production Sound Mixer and the Boom Operator. They are responsible for checking all stock, microphones and batteries on radio mikes and for making sure that the sound department runs as smoothly as possible.
On large scale productions, Sound Assistants may be called upon to operate the second boom, recording all off-camera lines of dialogue, i.e., lines spoken by characters who do not appear on screen. Sound Assistants usually work on a freelance basis with the same Production Sound Mixer and Boom Operator.
Sound Crew Leader
In a film's Sound Post Production department, the Sound Crew Leader is the Head of the group directly involved with the creation of a movie's soundtrack. Individual job titles include: sound designer, sound editor, sound effects, sound mixer, sound recordist, boom operator, re-recording mixer, music supervisor, and foley artist.
A Sound Designer (previously known as Sound Effects Editors) is responsible for providing any extra sounds to accompany and enhance the screen action. Most Sound Designers are experienced Supervising Sound Editors who also carry out a managerial role, steering the work of the entire sound post production process and the work of the re-recording mixer in collaboration with the Director. As well as creating the sounds for giant explosions or car crashes, Sound design is also the art of creating subtle sounds that enrich the language and feeling of a film.
Sound effects give the film its sonic identity, e.g., location, period, or a particular mood. Creating, manipulating and positioning these specific sound effects are the responsibilities of Sound Designers. They may be employed by Sound Post Production Houses, or work on a freelance basis in a studio close to the picture Editor. They are also likely to own their own recording equipment, e.g., DAT recorders or direct to hard-disc recorders and various microphones.
The Supervising Sound Editor and the Sound Editors are responsible for all sound post production. They are the Director's main point of contact for everything concerning film soundtracks. They must have a good grounding in dialogue recording, ADR (Automated Dialogue Replacement), Foley (post-sync sound effects), and sound effects or music editing.
They should be able to make accurate informed notes and comments based on films' creative sound requirements while always keeping the Director's vision in mind. The Supervising Sound Editor is both a managerial and a hands-on job. The majority of Supervising Sound Editors also work as Sound Designers on the same film. They can be employed by Audio Post Production Facilities Houses, or work on a freelance basis.
Sound Engineer / Technician
In film and television, the Sound Engineer is technical role involved in the day-to-day maintenance of all sound equipment on location or in the studio. Feature film often have a Sound Engineer as a member of the Sound Crew, so that any equipment problems can be fixed immediately so as not to hold up shooting.
In the television studio, the Sound Engineer has a similar role and will also be involve din the installation of new equipment. Interestingly, in a recording studio used by the music industry, the mixer Is known as the Sound Engineer.
There is a vast amount of sound equipment used in the film and television industries. Recording equipment and Playback equipment, microphones, headphones.
Sound Recordist / Mixer
While shooting a film or television programme, the recording of high quality original dialogue and other sound is vital. The Sound Recordist (also called Production Mixer) is charged with the responsibility of making sure everything recorded during shooting is as good and as clear as possible, so that the least amount of dialogue has to be replaced in ADR. This mean making sure the most suitable type of microphone is used, giving direction to the Boom Operator, and being aware of any intrusive background noise such as aircraft or traffic.
A Sound Stage is a large, soundproofed, hangar-like structure, or building used for the production of films. It's hired empty and has the sets built within it. Make-up rooms and production offices and store rooms are next door to the soundstage and directly accessible. Usually part of a studio complex. In television the same space is referred to as a Studio and usually comes equipped with cameras and production, sound and lighting galleries.
Sound Supervisors work on television productions and are usually studio-based or work on Outside Broadcasts (OBs). They mix the live sound from the studio and play-in any music or sound effects required during the recording. They'll work on multi-camera light entertainment, current affairs or drama productions and all multi-camera programming. They are in charge of sound crews, which may include, Sound Technicians, Boom Operators, and Technical Assistants.
Sound Tape & Grams Operator (Deputy Sound Supervisor)
In television productions the Deputy Sound Supervisor (Grams Operator), would play-in jingles, sounders, sound effects and theme tunes. Part of the Gallery Sound team.
See Sound Assistant.
In film and television productions, Special Effects are generally thought of as being the physical effects that actually take place live in front of the camera. As opposed to Visual Effects which are created in post production. Special Effects include, explosions, pyrotechnics, other physical effects include rain, wind, snow, fog, fire etc. The Special Effects department also create action props and Miniatures - models of towns or landscapes on which they can also create miniature explosions and other effects.
Special Effects Supervisor
The Special Effects Supervisor, is the head creative designer for special effects on a production. He looks over the script and designs the required effects in collaboration with the Director. He also prepares budgets for the Effects and hires specialist technicians to contribute towards the specific effects required.
Specialised Camera Mounts
To create unique and dynamic shots for a film or television production, the camera often has to be mounted in difficult position where a tripod or other standard equipment will not fit. In this case specialised mounts are use, sometimes designed by the Grip especially for the shot. These can include, mounts for the door or bonnet of a car, the cockpit or wing of an aircraft or a bumper-eye-view from a racing car among many others.
On a film set, the Stage Hand, moves scenery and other general equipment to allow camera access for specific shots and assists the scene building and striking crew.
The Standby Props person works on-set during the filming of a scene, overseeing the use of props, and monitoring their continuity. They must be able to respond to requests immediately, moving props and fixtures to help position Actors, crew and equipment. Standby Props often work in pairs, and in this case the senior Standby Props is referred to as the Chargehand. This is a highly demanding and pressurised job, and involves working as part of the on-the-floor team. The work of Standby Props is vital to the successful running of film shoots.
Steadicam is the trade name for a unique, stabilizing camera mount which allows the camera to be carried on a person's body but smooths - out any body movement to create a shot that looks like it was taken from a dolly. The Steadicam gives the Director the ability to create shots otherwise impossible, with standard camera equipment as the camera can travel from smooth ground, through doors and up and down steps while maintaining a completely fluid, smooth look.
The invention of the Steadicam was revolutionary in terms of film making and was awarded a Oscar for technical achievement. Previously, to achieve smooth movement, cameras had to be mounted on tracking equipment that required long and careful setting up. Steadicam allows Camera Operators to follow or create movement, wherever it is happening, without extensive use of grip equipment.
The Steadicam Assistant works with the Steadicam Operator, sometimes also the 'A' camera operator, to help with the assembly and adjustment of the rig and camera. During shooting the Assistant uses a radio linked device to follow focus and adjust the camera's exposure if required, for example when moving from outside and into a building.
The Steadicam Operator, sometimes also the 'A' Camera operator is a specialist within the camera department. They may be hired on a daily basis to perform specific shots within a scene, or employed as Camera Operators who specialize in Steadicam. Feature film Steadicam Operators usually specialize in this area, have invested in their own equipment, and are normally requested by Directors or DOPs.
Stills Photographers take the vitally important photographs during film shoots that are used to create the press and publicity for feature films. These arresting images, if they are used well, can genuinely contribute to a film's box office and international sales success. Stills Photographers usually work on set, recording scenes from the film during rehearsal before shooting, they may also be required to set up photographs in the style of the film in a studio environment.
For reasons of simplicity, time, or budget, some shots in a film may be accessed from a film library. This Stock Footage, is duplicated from other films who have sold non-specific shots to the library, such as helicopter shots, cityscapes, landscapes etc.
The Storyboard Artist visualises screenplays, or sequences from screenplays, into a series of illustrations in comic book form. These illustrations help the Director clarify exactly what they want to achieve, and give them something to show the Heads of Department exactly what is required, e.g., prosthetics for Make-up, Computer Generated Images (CGI) for Visual Effects, props for the Art Department, etc.
In many ways comic books are the art form that most closely resembles cinema - they both tell stories in a primarily visual form, involving individual, framed images linked sequentially to convey information. Although comic book images are static, it is often useful to employ the comic book form to develop complex sequences in films that require careful planning like action sequences, that cannot be left to on-set improvisation. Helping the Director to conceptualise these sequences is the specialist task of the Storyboard Artist.
In television, the Studio Director is in charge of everything that happens in the studio during the recording of a programme or during a live show. During pre-production they go over the script and work out how to cover the action using up to five cameras and, similar to a Film Director, create the overall vision for the programme. During the recording they direct the Camera Operators as to what shots are required, give the Vision Mixer instructions as to when to cut from one shot to another and also collaborate with the Lighting Director and Sound Supervisor as to their input to the programme. In drama, comedy and entertainment shows, they also work with the Actors and presenters, giving direction on their performance and characters.
The Studio Engineer, is a technical role which involves installing and maintaining state-of-the-art broadcast equipment in studios. They need to be able to interpret technical drawings and specifications and quickly identify and rectify faults which occur while the studio is in use so as to minimize any disruption to the recording of a programme.
Studio / Dry Hire
The term 'Dry Hire' means to hire a studio as a completely empty space and with no staff. Some camera and lighting equipment may be included but all design elements and crew need to be brought in by the production.
Studio / Wet Hire / Package
The term 'Wet Hire' means when the studio is hired it comes complete with the full 'Package' of equipment and crew needed for the production. However, it doesn't include sets but just an empty space usually with a plain painted cyc and floor.
Where the film or programme requires stunts and involves the use of stunt performers, the Stunt Coordinator will arrange the casting of the stunt performer(s) and will design and choreograph the action working closely with the Director. When Special Effects are also involved such as explosions or fires, they also work closely with the Special Effects Supervisor.
Stunt Performers are highly trained and qualified professionals. They are employed on a film to Double for Actors when dangerous or specialised actions are required, or to perform roles requiring specific skills, e.g., crashing a car, martial arts, diving, boxing, etc. Stunt Performers are subject to stringent checks, in order to verify that they can carry out the work effectively, and, safely. Their work is overseen and accredited by the Joint Industry Stunt Committee's (JISC) Register of Stunt/ Action Coordinators and Performers (the Register), which is approved by PACT, the BBC, ITV and Equity. The Stunt Register is divided into three categories of membership: Probationary, Intermediate and Full (Stunt Action Coordinators) and is the only approved directory of qualified stunt performers in the UK.
The subtitling of feature films is a simple and often preferred method of providing translation into languages other than those of the original characters in the film. It is also useful for deaf and hard of hearing audiences to enjoy films, both in the cinema and at home, on television or DVD. Unlike the linguistic subtitles that appear on foreign language films, these captions are written specifically for people who may never have heard music, the sound of a dog barking, or a footstep on a creaking floorboard, describing some of the action as well as the dialogue.
Swing Gang is an American term for Set Dressers. The Swing Gang dress and strike sets, as well as pick up and return the dressing. They work apart from the Set Dressers who are on set during the actual shooting of the film as they are always either prepping a set for shooting or striking it after it's been shot.