TV Production Overview

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This PPT was created for a high school Mass Communications and Television Production course in Albuquerque, NM.

Text of TV Production Overview

  • TV Production Overview Television viewing hit an all-time high in the U.S. in 2008, with the average American watching 142 hours of TV a month. Most U.S. homes receive about 120 channels Presentation created by John Grace DATA Charter High School Albuquerque, NM Some excerpts from
  • Production Basics
    • Camerapersons, writers, directors, producers, and even on-camera talent find that having a solid understanding of the
    tools and techniques of the entire process makes a major difference in the success of productions -- not to mention their careers.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • The Producer comes up with the program concept, lays out the budget, and
    makes the major decisions. This person is the team leader, the one who works with the writers, hires the director, decides on the key talent, and guides the general direction of the production. On smaller productions, the producer may also take charge of the directing chores and is referred to as a producer-director .
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • On a major production, one of the producer's first jobs is to hire a writer to
    write the script. The script is like a written plan or blueprint for the production. The producer will next consider the key talent for the production. In general, the talent includes actors, reporters, hosts, guests, and off-camera narrators - anyone who appears on camera or whose voice is heard.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • In a large production, the producer will hire the director. The director is in
    charge of overseeing pre-production, hiring and coordinating the activities of the production staff and on-camera talent, choreographing the talent, selecting the camera shots, and supervising post. Once the producer sets things in motion, the director is in charge of taking the script from the beginning to the very end of the production.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • Assisting the director in the control room is the technical director, or TD,
    who operates the video switcher. The technical director is also responsible for coordinating the technical aspects of the production. One or more production assistants (PAs) may be hired to help the producer and director. Among other things, PAs keep notes on ongoing production needs and changes.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • An essential member of a production crew is the video engineer who is
    responsible for shading, phasing and timing the cameras and overseeing the quality of the video signal. The video engineer is well-versed in the technical specifications of the industry and maintains the equipment while on location or in the studio.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • The lighting director (LD) designs the lighting plan, arranges for the lighting
    equipment, and sets up and checks the lighting.
    • Some productions have a set designer who, along with the producer and director, designs the set and supervises its construction, painting, and installation.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • The makeup person, with or without the help of a crew, is responsible for
    making the talent look their best - or their worst, if that's what the script calls for. On-camera talent often prefer to do their own makeup in television.
    • Major dramatic productions have a wardrobe person who sees that the actors have clothes appropriate to the story and script.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • The Audio Director, Audio Mixer or A1, oversees the audio department and
    arranges for the audio recording equipment, sets up and checks mics (microphones), monitors the audio on the sound board during production, and then strikes the audio equipment at wrap. The A2, often known in studio as the boom operator, watches rehearsals and places and wires the mics for each scene or event.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • The VTR or Playback Operator preps the video recording equipment and
    accessories, and monitors video quality. During sporting events they also handle instant replays.
    • In many productions, the Continuity Secretary (CS) or Script Supervisor takes careful notes on scene and continuity details to ensure that these details remain consistent.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • The CG Operator, or Chyron Operator creates graphics, opening titles,
    subtitles, and closing credits into a computer-based device that inserts the text over the video.
    • Camera operators help run cables and set up the cameras. They work with the director in blocking (setting up) and shooting each shot.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • The Audio Tech arranges for the audio recording equipment, sets up and
    checks mics (microphones), monitors audio quality during the production, and then strikes (another production term meaning disassembles and, if necessary, removes) the audio recording equipment and accessories after the production is over. ( Mic , strangely enough, is pronounced mike. )
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • The Boom Operator or boomer watches the rehearsals and weighs in
    on the proper mics and their placement for each scene. During an on-location (out-of-the-studio) shoot, this person may need strong arms to hold the mic boom over the talent for long periods of time. In a studio shoot, he may be high over the set on a boom platform to follow the action with a telescoping mic boom.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • Depending on the type of production, there will be a Floor Manager or Stage
    Manager who is responsible for coordinating the activities on the set and for cueing the talent.
    • One or more grips, electricians, or stagehands, assist with the technical aspects of stage productions. On location, they often act as cable persons to help keep handheld cameras mobile.
  • Production Basics - The Crew
    • After shooting is finished, the editors use the video and audio recordings to
    cut the segments together. Technicians add music and other effects to create the final product. The importance of editing to the success of a production is far greater than most people realize. Specific responsibilities of other production personnel vary widely depending on the type and size of the production.
  • The Phases of Production
    • The production process can be broken down into preproduction, production,
    and postproduction. In preproduction, the basic ideas and approaches of the production are developed and set in motion. It is in this phase that the production can be set on a proper course or misdirected (messed up) to such an extent that no amount of time, talent, or editing expertise can save it.
  • The Phases of Production
    • During preproduction, not only are key talent and production members
    selected, but all the major elements are planned. Since things such as scenic design, lighting, and audio are interrelated, they must be carefully coordinated in a series of production meetings. Sets must be constructed and painted/finished, costumes created and lights hung and wired.
  • The Phases of Production
    • Once the basic elements are in place, rehearsals can start. A simple on-
    location segment may involve only a quick check of talent positions so that camera moves, audio, and lighting can be checked. A simple studio newscast is often performed live without a rehearsal since the format varies little from day to day.
  • The Phases of Production
    • A complex dramatic production may require many days of rehearsals.
    These generally start with a table reading or dry rehearsal where the talent along with key production personnel sit around a table and read through the script. Script changes often take place at this point. Next, there is usually a tech rehearsal or cue-to-cue rehearsal with or without talent to familiarize the crew with the blo