Film Production Coordinator: Career and Salary Facts

Explore the career requirements for film production coordinators. Get the facts about education requirements, job duties, career outlook and salary to determine if this is the right career for you. Schools offering Digital Cinematography degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is a Film Production Coordinator?

Film production coordinators, also known as production managers, are essential to the creation of a project since they manage the behind-the-scenes work. They take charge of things like hiring, set prep, finding locations, selecting local talent for background, or arranging living arrangements for the cast and crew during production on location. They also have to make sure that the decisions made are within budget as well as the daily and long-term production schedule. The table below outlines the general requirements for a career as a film production coordinator.

Education Required High school diploma, bachelor's degree to learn additional skills
Education Field of Study Film production if pursuing bachelor's degree
Key Skills Communication, organizational, leadership, negotiation
Job Growth (2014-2024)* 9% (for all producers and directors)
Median Salary (2017)** $60,628

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **

What Will I Do as a Film Production Coordinator?

As a film production coordinator, also sometimes called a production manager, you'll be responsible for handling work behind the scenes of film projects. Tasks will typically be administrative in nature. You'll report directly to the production manager and will work mainly out of an office to get things ready for the project you're assigned to. In addition, you'll usually be in charge of enforcing a strict schedule and keeping everything within the allotted budget.

You may run the day-to-day activities of the production office, order equipment, arrange traveling accommodations for the production crew and talent, process paperwork, set up and negotiate contracts and arrange meals for those working on the film set. You may also be in charge of making sure all props and costumes are delivered to the production site.

You may need to check with local, state and federal agencies, businesses or building owners to secure any permits or permissions needed to film at a location or inside a building. You may have to work with local law enforcement to coordinate traffic and other activities within the filming location.

How Do I Enter the Field?

A high school diploma is generally all that is needed for administrative jobs; however, as this job is specific to the film industry, a bachelor's degree in film production may allow you to learn the skills needed to work in this industry. Skills that can be helpful in a film production coordinator career include communication, organizational, leadership and negotiation skills. You also need to be detail-oriented, self-motivated and flexible. In addition, you need to understand the film production process and film production management.

What Can I Expect To Earn? provides a look at how different variables can affect the potential salary you may earn as a film production coordinator. The site stated the total annual pay, including bonuses, for the 10th-90th percentile range was $33,612 to $99,603, as of January 2017.

Showing how experience may play a role, the site listed the salary for production coordinators in film and television, with 0-5 years of experience, as earning a median salary of $47,000, while those with 10-20 years of experience earned $71,000. Location also played a role in median salary. Individuals living in New York earned $72,160, which is above the national average.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Many related career choices may have something to do in entertainment. Many producers and directors have worked as actors, singers or dancers. They may not require a degree but some college and experience as an actor, singer or dancer will be helpful. However, to be a film and video editor, you will need a bachelor's degree to begin. You could be working with the latest digital and analog equipment on a television, movie, video or live news broadcast program. Another related career could include writing. You could create scripts for commercials, write for sitcoms, or full films for Hollywood. A bachelor's degree is necessary for writing in these professions.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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