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Studio Pulse

Producer Checklist

When you think of video production, you know the director, camera operator, maybe costume designer…but the producer tends to be an elusive role. What do producers actually do? Well, to give you an idea, here is a checklist that we use here at One Floor Up when going into a live-action production.

  • Concepting
      • Kickoff with the client – Meet our clients, and see what kind of video they’re looking for!
      • Brainstorming session – We meet as a keep and brainstorm some concepts that would work under the parameters.
      • Concept pitch – We pitch our best concept ideas to our clients to see what they’d prefer.
      • Scoping/creating a budget – We map out the needs of the project, and create a budget to stick to moving forward. 
  • Director
      • Hire – Find a director we think would work great on this project.
      • Concepting – We work with the director on the concept and see how they want to execute their vision.
      • Shot list – We work with the director to create a list of all shots we’re going to need for the project.
      • Director’s treatment – We work with our director to create a treatment to present to our clients – sort of an intro as to who the director is and what their ideas are for the look!
  • Script
      • Script from client/writer – We kickoff with our client and writer to get an idea for the script tone + messaging!
      • Script edits – We work with our writer on script adjustments from our knowledge of the project
      • Script approval – We present our script to the client for approval and make the necessary edits.
  • Location
      • Research – We do extensive research to find a proper location in the right area with the right look for the production.
      • Scout – We conduct location visits in which we’ll go to the location beforehand and take photos, get a tour, and access the usability of the space. 
      • Permits – When we select a location, we work with the managers of these locations + the local government to acquire the necessary permits for filming. 
      • Access + facilities – We ensure we have access to parking + facilities or acquire our own before the production begins. 
  • On-Camera Talent
      • Interviewees
        • Pre-interviews calls – When conducting interviews, we like to to a pre-interview call so the interviewees can get to know us + get an idea for what we want to focus on in the interview on camera.
        • Question brainstorm – We brainstorm a list of questions to ask our interviewees based on the context of the video and what we’d like to capture (and also share these with our clients for approval!)
        • Scheduling – We schedule the interviews at our locations + ensure they have proper access!
      • Talent
        • Contact agency for selections – Instead when working with talent, we first contact nearby talent agencies letting them know what our video is about + who they might suggest. 
        • Auditions – When we have our selections, we conduct auditions either in person or via tape with our director to select who we’d like to cast.
        • Scheduling – We connect back with our talent agency to inform the talent of where + when the production is taking place.
    • Art Department
      • Art director – When we have a production with a lot of detail needed for look, we hire an art director to help with production design
      • Painting/set dressing – If necessary, we decide to paint or dress up our set beforehand.
      • Props – We work with the art director to ensure we have the right props needed for a set – for example an iPad or an empty coffee cup!
      • HMU – We hire a hair + makeup artist to ensure our talent is dressed in the proper attire + looks their absolute best the day of production!
  • Storyboards
      • Storyboard artist session – We work with our director and a storyboard artist to draw out each of the shots we listed in our initial list so we can get visual references before we shoot + ensure they get client approval!
  • Crew
      • Hire freelance crew – At One Floor Up, we hire all freelance on-set production crew. We’ll look through the needs of the video + determine how many + what types of roles we need – camera operators, sound artists, 
      • Pre-pro meeting – Once we hire all necessary crew, we will schedule a pre-production meeting in which we + our director will walk through the whole production and explain what the game plan is!
      • Book necessary gear – After the meeting, we’ll decide what type of equipment we will need and book all necessary gear for the shooting days. 
      • Purchase art department – Along with this, the art department will purchase all props, set pieces, costumes, etc. 
  • Scheduling
      • Production schedule – We create production schedules accounting for lighting, talent availability, location availability, and which order of shots will be most efficient for the shooting days. 
      • Call sheets – We create call sheets to send out to our crew and clients the day before our production starts. This will include a schedule of production including what time they need to arrive, the address + where to park/access the location, list of crew members + talent along with contact info. 
  • Craft Services
    • Plan meals – We ask all crew members about food restrictions, and look at our schedule in order to plan our meals + meal times accordingly. 
    • Book craft services rep – The people gotta eat – so for full-day productions we often hire a craft services person to handle all meals and snacks through the shoot day. For shorter productions, we do it ourselves, but it’s always nice to have an expert!


Then after all this, we’re in good shape to start the production! The producer’s job is really to ensure every box here gets checked and to keep organized — and keep everybody happy and excited to get to work! 

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