Glossary of Production Terms
There can be many crew positions on media projects of all types. As a Film Friendly certified community liaison, you will most likely come into contact with some of the positions listed below. View a more comprehensive list here.
Buyer - Works in the Art Department; responsible for buying/ renting props, costumes, furniture and other items that appear on camera.
Casting Director - Responsible for auditioning, assisting with the selection of and hiring of the actors and the extras.
Craft Services – Provides on-set snacks and beverages for the cast and crew. Separate from catering, which provides full meals.
Construction Coordinator - Responsible for coordinating construction and details of the set, including furniture, working props, models and miniatures.
Director - Responsible for the overall cinematic vision of the film; orchestrating performances by the actors; and managing the overview of all creative elements of the production.
Director of Photography / Cinematographer (DP) - Head of the Camera Department; responsible for the overall look of the film; works with Director, Producer, Production Designer, and Visual Effects Supervisor to create the visual representation of the script; selects camera, film stock, lenses, lighting style and color scheme; and sets the composition of each shot.
Line Producer - See Production Manager for a very similar job description.
Location Scout - Responsible for finding locations for the project during pre-production stages; and prepares photographs of possible locations for review by the “above the line” (ATL) creative team.
Producer - Responsible for overseeing all phases of production in regards to financial and managerial control; works with Executives and the Production Company throughout the production process to ensure that production is completed on time and on budget; provides the Director with the needed production personnel and crew.
Production Assistant (PA) – Aside from Intern, the most entry-level position on the crew. PAs handle an assortment of odd jobs and errands in the office and on the set.
Production Designer - The "architect" of the physical appearance of the “world” the story takes place in. Responsible for planning and overseeing the creation of built sets, scenery, costumes, and other items that appear in front of the camera.
Production Manager / Unit Production Manager (UPM) - Head of the Production Office. Responsible for creating and keeping track of the budget; approving schedules and call sheets; and hiring and firing crew.
Property Master - Responsible for the procurement, placement and maintenance of set props, hand props and action props. Props are items that are used by an actor; set dressing are items that appear on camera but are not held or used by an actor.
Set Decorator - Head of the Set Dressing Department. Responsible for working with the Production Designer on set design and decoration; oversees the dressing of the set with appropriate decorative items; manages the acquisition of set items.
Transportation Coordinator - Head of the Transportation Department. Responsible for being the liaison between other production departments and the Transportation Department for scheduling and coordinating drivers for actors and crew, to and from set.