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Working As an Assistant Technical Director

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • $54,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Assistant Technical Director Do

Producers and directors create motion pictures, television shows, live theater, commercials, and other performing arts productions. They interpret a writer’s script to entertain or inform an audience.

Duties

Producers and directors typically do the following:

  • Select scripts or topics for a film, show, commercial, or play
  • Audition and select cast members and the film or stage crew
  • Approve the design and financial aspects of a production
  • Oversee the production process, including performances, lighting, and choreography
  • Oversee the postproduction process, including editing, special effects, music selection, and a performance’s overall tone
  • Ensure that a project stays on schedule and within budget
  • Promote finished works or productions through interviews, advertisements, and film festivals

Large productions often have associate, assistant, and line producers who share responsibilities. For example, on a large movie set an executive producer is in charge of the entire production, and a line producer runs the day-to-day operations. A TV show may employ several assistant producers to whom the head or executive producer gives certain duties, such as supervising the costume and makeup team.

Similarly, large productions usually employ several assistant directors, who help the director with tasks such as making set changes or notifying the performers when it is their time to go onstage. The specific responsibilities of assistant producers or directors vary with the size and type of production they work on.

Producers make the business and financial decisions for a motion picture, TV show, commercial, or stage production. They raise money for the project and hire the director and crew. The crew may include set and costume designers, film and video editors, a musical director, a choreographer, and other workers. Some producers may assist in the selection of cast members. Producers set the budget and approve any major changes to the project. They make sure that the production is completed on time, and they are ultimately responsible for the final product.

Directors are responsible for the creative decisions of a production. They select cast members, conduct rehearsals, and direct the work of the cast and crew. During rehearsals, they work with the actors to help them more accurately portray their characters. For nonfiction video, such as documentaries or live broadcasts, directors choose topics or subjects to film. They investigate the topic and may interview relevant participants or experts on camera. Directors also work with cinematographers and other crew members to ensure the final product matches the overall vision.

Directors work with set designers, costume designers, location scouts, and art directors to build a project’s set. During a film’s postproduction phase, they work closely with film editors and music supervisors to make sure that the final product comes out the way the producer and director envisioned. Stage directors, unlike television or film directors who document their product with cameras, make sure the cast and crew give a consistently strong live performance. For more information, see the profiles on actors, writers and authors, film and video editors and camera operators, dancers and choreographers, and multimedia artists and animators.

Although directors are in charge of the creative aspects of a show, they ultimately answer to producers. Some directors also share producing duties for their own films.

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How To Become An Assistant Technical Director

Most producers and directors have a bachelor’s degree and several years of work experience in an occupation related to motion picture, TV, or theater production, such as an actor, film and video editor, or cinematographer.

Education

Producers and directors usually have a bachelor’s degree. Many students study film or cinema at colleges and universities. In these programs, students learn about film history, editing, screenwriting, cinematography, and the filmmaking process. Others major in writing, acting, journalism, or communication. Some producers earn a degree in business, arts management, or nonprofit management.

Many stage directors complete a degree in theater and some go on to receive a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree. Classes may include directing, playwriting, set design, and acting. As of May 2015, the National Association of Schools of Theatre accredited more than 180 programs in theater arts.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Producers and directors might start out working in a theatrical management office as a business or company manager. In television or film, they might start out as an assistant or another low-profile studio job.

Advancement

As a producer’s or director’s reputation grows, he or she may work on larger projects that attract more attention or publicity.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Producers and directors must coordinate the work of many different people to finish a production on time and within budget.

Creativity. Because a script can be interpreted in different ways, directors must decide how they want to interpret it and then how to represent the script’s ideas on the screen or stage.

Leadership skills. A director instructs actors and helps them portray their characters in a believable manner. They also supervise the crew, who are responsible for the behind the scenes work.

Time-management skills. Producers must find and hire the best director and crew for the production. They make sure that all involved do their jobs effectively, keeping within a production schedule and a budget.

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Average Yearly Salary
$54,000
Show Salaries
$38,000
Min 10%
$54,000
Median 50%
$54,000
Median 50%
$54,000
Median 50%
$54,000
Median 50%
$54,000
Median 50%
$54,000
Median 50%
$54,000
Median 50%
$75,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
The Walt Disney Company
Highest Paying City
Sacramento, CA
Highest Paying State
Alaska
Avg Experience Level
2.9 years
How much does an Assistant Technical Director make at top companies?
The national average salary for an Assistant Technical Director in the United States is $54,357 per year or $26 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $38,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $75,000.

Real Assistant Technical Director Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Assistant Director of Technology Ruder Finn Inc. New York, NY Jan 02, 2014 $120,000
Assistant Director, Academic Technology & Infrastr Mount San Antonio College Walnut, CA Jul 01, 2014 $109,980
Assistant Director, Academic Technology&Infrastruc Mount San Antonio College Walnut, CA Jul 01, 2013 $107,222
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Apr 21, 2013 $73,925
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Feb 15, 2010 $69,661
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Sep 01, 2014 $63,744
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Jan 09, 2014 $63,744
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Apr 05, 2012 $61,475
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Jan 15, 2012 $61,475
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Apr 29, 2012 $61,475
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Sep 15, 2012 $61,475
Assistant Technical Director Digital Domain Media Group Port Saint Lucie, FL Sep 20, 2012 $57,200
Assistant Technical Director (Theatre) Southern Methodist University Dallas, TX Aug 01, 2013 $52,333
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Oct 01, 2012 $48,917
Category IV-Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Oct 01, 2011 $48,848
Assistant Technical Director Walt Disney Pictures Burbank, CA Apr 08, 2012 $46,373

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Top Skills for An Assistant Technical Director

  1. Audio Visual
  2. Customer Service
  3. Technical Support
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Manage audio visual aspects including lighting, recording and broadcasting for trade shows, conventions and conferences.
  • Supported and provided customer service for users of proprietary learning management suite.
  • Mentored technical support staff and assisted Technical Support Director with resolving complex customer issues.
  • Experienced with Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows XP.
  • Created incident management category structures for IT Infrastructure teams.

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Average Salary:

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Top 10 Best States for Assistant Technical Directors

  1. Alaska
  2. New York
  3. New Jersey
  4. Utah
  5. Rhode Island
  6. California
  7. Mississippi
  8. Connecticut
  9. Maryland
  10. Nebraska
  • (12 jobs)
  • (229 jobs)
  • (130 jobs)
  • (40 jobs)
  • (13 jobs)
  • (399 jobs)
  • (16 jobs)
  • (52 jobs)
  • (77 jobs)
  • (17 jobs)

Assistant Technical Director Demographics

Gender

Male

70.1%

Female

21.8%

Unknown

8.1%
Ethnicity

White

62.9%

Hispanic or Latino

14.3%

Black or African American

11.1%

Asian

7.9%

Unknown

3.8%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

43.2%

French

13.5%

German

8.1%

Portuguese

5.4%

Chinese

5.4%

Italian

5.4%

Vietnamese

2.7%

Cantonese

2.7%

Czech

2.7%

Tagalog

2.7%

Mandarin

2.7%

Korean

2.7%

Arabic

2.7%
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Assistant Technical Director Education

Schools

Florida State University

8.5%

Pennsylvania State University

7.7%

Full Sail University

6.8%

University of Phoenix

6.8%

Ohio University -

6.0%

Texas A&M University

5.1%

West Virginia University

5.1%

University of Texas at Austin

5.1%

Missouri University of Science and Technology

4.3%

New York University

4.3%

Michigan State University

4.3%

Columbia College Chicago

4.3%

Ohio State University

4.3%

Miami Dade College

4.3%

Western Governors University

4.3%

Central Michigan University

4.3%

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

4.3%

American University

3.4%

University of Wisconsin Extension

3.4%

Brigham Young University

3.4%
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Majors

Theatre

21.4%

Business

11.4%

Communication

9.4%

Fine Arts

5.6%

Computer Science

5.6%

Photography

4.4%

Psychology

4.0%

Electrical Engineering

3.5%

Journalism

3.5%

Information Technology

3.5%

Drafting And Design

3.1%

Political Science

3.1%

Graphic Design

3.1%

Music

2.9%

Management

2.7%

Medical Technician

2.7%

Computer Information Systems

2.7%

Digital Media

2.5%

Education

2.5%

Audiovisual Communications Technologies

2.5%
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Degrees

Bachelors

48.7%

Masters

21.5%

Other

15.8%

Associate

7.5%

Doctorate

2.7%

Certificate

2.5%

Diploma

1.1%
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Updated May 19, 2020