Fit out the stage for theater productions.
Some movies and television shows are shot entirely within the walls of a studio. The sets are built, the crew is in place, and the action unfolds in a carefully orchestrated manner. Other shows mix it up by shooting segments outside the studio, or in the “field.” These shoots can be slightly harder to control, but a Field Producer works hard to ensure that everything goes according to plan.
A Field Producer’s tasks can vary significantly depending on the show. Reality television shows, for example, may require simple observation and damage control. News shows, by contrast, may necessitate more intense setup and writing.
As a Field Producer for a news program, you determine where the Reporter will stand, and you may write the words the person will speak into the camera. If the piece requires pithy quotes, you look for people who are willing to be interviewed, and you ensure that they sign release paperwork. As the cameras roll, you stand to the side and make sure the shot looks perfect.
As a Field Producer in reality television, you work with the Writer and make sure you understand how the scene will unfold. Then, you direct the Cameraman and capture the action. Sometimes, you write the script of the show, and you note down times that correspond to good shots so the show’s Director can pull out those bits and splice them together.
If you work for a small company, you might handle niggling details such as obtaining permits, renting equipment, scheduling food deliveries, and transporting workers to the site. If you work for a large company, a herd of others handle those tasks instead.