What is an associate producer?
Do you ever watch the credits after a movie and wonder, who are all those people, and what do they do? Why are there so many producers, and what is the difference? And how can I get involved in this glamorous secret world behind the scenes? Maybe the limelight isn't for you, but if you love movies and have a mind for business, you might be cut out to be an associate producer.
Associate Producer Jobs
The term "associate producer" is used in two quite different ways. The first is to describe a person who works under the direct supervision of the producer, performing whatever duties the producer asks of him or her.
If two production companies are involved in a project, the head of the smaller company may be given the title of associate producer, and the head of the larger company is called the producer or executive producer. In this case, the associate producer is not so much an assistant as a junior associate.
Either way, associate producer jobs are similar to film producer jobs: assisting in arranging for supplies, helping in hiring the critical staff and talent, and (most importantly) finding the funding your film will need. An associate producer is involved in every aspect of pre-production and post production[/production/post-production/] and can even make important decisions if need be.
How to Become an Associate Producer
Now all you need to know is how to become an associate producer. Associate producer jobs are usually found through networking and interning. Internships are usually unpaid but the skills and contacts you cultivate more than pay off in the long run. If you are young and inexperienced, this is the way to go.
Networking is a little trickier; you have to know your stuff and know some people. If you have a cousin who is a makeup artist or production coordinator on one film, he or she may be able to give you tips on other films that are hiring. Also, contact old professors or guidance counselors from your business or film school; they may have important leads or at least the name of an alumnus who is working in the film industry.
If you are determined to work in the production end of the movie business, there is only one thing to remember; be persistent and be present. Consistency and tenacity will get you recognized and get you a job as an associate producer.