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What is a Producer?

A film producer oversees the making of movies. The producer initiates, coordinates, supervises and controls matters such as raising funding, hiring key personnel, and arranging for distributors. The producer is involved throughout all phases of the filmmaking process from inception to completion of a project.

In the early 20th century, the producer also tended to wield ultimate creative control on a film project. However, with the demise of Hollywood's studio system in the 1950s, creative control began to shift into the hands of the director.

Changes in movie distribution and marketing in the 1970s and '80s gave rise to the modern-day phenomenon of the Hollywood blockbuster, which tended to bring power back into the hands of the producer. While marketing and advertising for films accentuates the role of the director, apart from a few well-known film makers it is usually the producer who has the greatest degree of control in the American industry

Types of Producers
  1. Executive Producer: In major productions, usually a representative, if not the CEO, of a motion picture production company that is producing a film, although the title may be given as an honorarium to a major investor. Often oversees the financial, administrative, and creative aspects of production, though not directly in the technical aspects. In smaller companies or independent projects, may be synonomous with Creator/Writer.
  2. Producer: the "classic" definition of producer who typically has the greatest involvement and oversight among a film's various producers. In smaller companies or independent projects, may be the equivalent of the Executive Producer.
  3. Co-Producer: A producer who generally reports to the (Executive) Producer and is more involved in the day-to-day production. In independent projects, the title connotes an involvement in the inception of the production.
  4. Associate Producer: Usually acts as a representative of the Producer, who may share financial, creative, or administrative responsibilities, delegated from that producer. Often, a title granted as a courtesy or to one who made a major financial or creative contribution to the production.
  5. Production Director: A representative of the motion picture production company assigned to the set and given the authority to act in behalf of the senior production team members.
  6. Line Producer: Oversees a film's budget and day-to-day activities
  7. Production supervisor : Usually performs managerial duties on one aspect of the production.
  8. Production manager: is responsible for co-ordinating the various sub-diciplines (scenic, wardrobe, lighting, sound, etc.) as well as overseeing the management team. He also deals with the logistics of the production itself, such as the procurement of shooting locations etc. The production manager's job is rather fluid, however, and may also include just about anything an enterprising producer or director may dream up. Usually, though, the production manager's job is mainly supervisory, although it requires excellent 'people skills' in order to smooth over disagreements that inevitably arise.

Some notable Film Producers
  1. Albert R. Broccoli, Michael G. Wilson, and Barbara Broccoli - The James Bond series
  2. Jerry Bruckheimer - Top Gun, Crimson Tide, Con Air
  3. Dino de Laurentiis - Waterloo, Death Wish, U-571, Hannibal
  4. Robert Evans- Love Story, The Godfather, Chinatown, The Saint
  5. Howard Kazanjian - Raiders of the Lost Ark, Return Of The Jedi, Demolition Man
  6. Alexander Korda - Things to Come, The Four Feathers (1939), The Thief of Bagdad (1940)
  7. Walter Mirisch - West Side Story, The Sound Of Music
  8. Harry Saltzman - The James Bond series, Battle of Britain, The Ipcress File
  9. Ralph Winter - X-Men, Fantastic Four, X2: X-Men United
  10. David O. Selznick - King Kong, Gone with the Wind
  11. Sam Spiegel - The African Queen, Bridge on the River Kwai, Lawrence of Arabia
  12. Irving Thalberg - Mutiny on the Bounty, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Grand Hotel, A Night at the Opera
  13. Hal B. Wallis - The Maltese Falcon, Casablanca, Elvis Presley films
  14. Saul Zaentz - One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Amadeus, The English Patient
  15. Darryl F. Zanuck - many Shirley Temple movies, The Grapes of Wrath, All About Eve, The Longest Day
  16. Rick McCallum, the Star Wars prequel trilogy
  17. Gary Kurtz, the Star Wars trilogy

Contributed by: Mohinder Pal Singh
City: Kolkata
Country: India
Date: March 15, 2010