Television Producer: Salary and Career Facts

Research what it takes to become a television producer. Learn about degree requirements, job outlook and salary to find out if this is the career for you. Schools offering Radio Broadcasting degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is a Television Producer?

A television producer performs a number of duties as part of a team that creates a television show. Television producers are responsible for overseeing all aspects of the television show production. They pitch ideas for the program, create budgets, review scripts, and hire actors who will take part in the show. Most producers learn the field through an undergraduate degree program and fieldwork. The table below can give you additional details on this career.

Degree Required Bachelor's degree
Education Field of Study Cinema, film, business
Key Skills Time management, writing, communication, creativity
Job Growth (2014-2024) 9% * (for producers and directors)
Median Salary (2016) $65,441**

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **PayScale.com

What Degree Programs Are Available for TV Producers?

TV production programs are available at the associate degree, bachelor's degree, master's degree and doctoral levels. Associate and bachelor's degree programs emphasize the development of technical skills, such as lighting, cross-cutting, visual effects and editing. Master's degree programs aim to integrate technical knowledge with the management skills necessary to produce TV shows and movies. Doctoral degree programs are devoted to analysis, theory and research in narrative studies, media studies, foreign TV or television history.

Where Will I Work?

As a TV producer, you can work for broadcast networks, cable companies, news corporations and production houses. The major production centers are in Los Angeles and New York City, with smaller broadcast and cable operations scattered around the country. The BLS also shows that the employment of directors and producers will increase 9% from 2014-2024. Growth will be most rapid in content for distribution via the Internet and mobile phones, not just those in television shows.

What Will the Job Duties Be?

Producers are responsible for creating, organizing and supporting the shooting of a television show, movie or other entertainment project, from inception to completion. Duties of a producer include pitching a movie or show idea, reviewing scripts, securing financing, estimating production costs, creating a budget, and hiring actors, directors and crew members for the actual shooting.

While executive producers are in charge of a production and securing financing, other producers are staffed to help organize the shooting. An associate producer performs whatever functions are delegated to them by the executive producer, such as solving any issues involving cast and crew. On larger projects, a supervising producer may work under an executive producer and oversee an associate producer. A segment producer focuses on individual segments within a multi-part production. Line producers supervise the shooting of a project and are sometimes permitted to participate in creative decisions.

What Can I Expect to Earn?

You will encounter a variety of salaries depending on your industry and job title. Overall, PayScale.com reported that in October 2016, TV producers earned a median annual salary of $65,441. Mid-career producers were listed as making $65,931 in that year, while experienced producers had a median annual income of $82,600.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Other professions that are similar to television producer include actor, art director, as well as film and video editor and camera operator. As an actor, you have to play characters in films, television shows, theaters and other types of media productions. Actors bring life to characters in the writer's script in order to entertain audiences. On the production side, film and video editors and camera operators capture, record, edit and manipulate moving images in order to get the best scenes. Art directors are in charge of creating and managing visual representations, including art and photographs, for newspapers, magazines and even movies and television productions. These careers, except for acting, require a bachelor's degree.

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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