What is a Producer

Producers work for the entertainment industry. They secure resources and coordinate logistical arrangements for the making of a film, television show, or theatre performance. They make sure production expenses do not go over the budget, that deliverables are ready on time, and the finished products meet the expectations of investors.

They are responsible for hiring staff, coordinating creative work, preparing and presenting funding applications, monitoring and approving post-production work, and performing managerial tasks such as scheduling, planning work phases, and taking care of the marketing of the completed product.

If you want to be a producer, you should start with a college education in film or theatre or cultural management. It is not obligatory, though. Being a producer is all about finding creative ways to get something done, and there is never one path that always works. Many actors, writers, or other creative people who are now producers just started working on their own personal projects and discovered the know-how along the way.

What Does a Producer 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.

Learn more about what a Producer does

How To Become a Producer

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 Salary
$71,174
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
5%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
9,079
Job Openings
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Producer Career Paths

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Average Salary for a Producer

Producers in America make an average salary of $71,174 per year or $34 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $110,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $46,000 per year.
Average Salary
$71,174
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Producer Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Producer. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Producer Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Producer resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

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Producer Demographics

Producer Gender Statistics

male

55.0 %

female

40.2 %

unknown

4.8 %

Producer Ethnicity Statistics

White

71.7 %

Hispanic or Latino

11.7 %

Black or African American

7.3 %

Producer Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

49.5 %

French

14.0 %

German

4.7 %
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Producer Education

Producer Majors

Producer Degrees

Bachelors

78.8 %

Associate

7.9 %

Masters

7.8 %

Top Colleges for Producers

1. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

2. Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$59,430
Enrollment
8,216

3. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

4. University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$14,184
Enrollment
30,845

5. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,987
Enrollment
18,946

6. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

7. Emory University

Atlanta, GA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,306
Enrollment
6,975

8. University of Texas at Austin

Austin, TX • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,610
Enrollment
40,329

9. Northeastern University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,522
Enrollment
13,760

10. California State University - Long Beach

Long Beach, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$6,798
Enrollment
31,503
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Top Skills For a Producer

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 16.2% of producers listed online on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and leadership skills are important as well.

  • Online, 16.2%
  • Video Production, 7.0%
  • News Stories, 5.8%
  • Client Relationships, 5.2%
  • Project Management, 4.8%
  • Other Skills, 61.0%
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12 Producer RESUME EXAMPLES

Best States For a Producer

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a producer. The best states for people in this position are Alaska, California, New York, and Nevada. Producers make the most in Alaska with an average salary of $100,474. Whereas in California and New York, they would average $91,158 and $87,912, respectively. While producers would only make an average of $86,007 in Nevada, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New York

Total Producer Jobs:
470
Highest 10% Earn:
$162,000
Location Quotient:
2.12
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. California

Total Producer Jobs:
732
Highest 10% Earn:
$163,000
Location Quotient:
1.45
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Connecticut

Total Producer Jobs:
74
Highest 10% Earn:
$153,000
Location Quotient:
1.29
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Producers

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Top Producer Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ producers and discovered their number of producer opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that State Farm was the best, especially with an average salary of $82,879. CBS follows up with an average salary of $83,913, and then comes Farmers Insurance Group with an average of $88,192. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a producer. The employers include j2 Global, The Walt Disney Company, and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

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