Types of Jobs in Film Industry (Duties and Salary)
Updated 18 March 2023
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The film industry offers a vast spectrum of jobs ranging from technical to creative. Each job requires a unique skill set and has its own area of responsibility. Entering and thriving in this industry can be rewarding, but it demands a lot of hard work and perseverance for success. If you are looking to make a career in the film industry, this article ca give you an idea of different career paths possible with the duties associated with each role and the prospective salary.
Types of jobs in the film industry
Here is a list of some jobs with the primary duties each role performs and the salary each role offers:
National average salary: ₹17,327 per month
Primary duties: Hair and makeup are major contributors to how an actor looks on screen. A hairstylist creates hair and wig looks for actors to embody their characters and stands by throughout the shoot to help actors maintain appearances. Also, they collaborate with other film industry professionals, like costume designers, makeup artists and art directors, to ensure the hairstyles match the story's time period and aesthetic. In some productions, they may create special effects looks using an actor's natural hair or wigs to create unique looks or ones that can stand up to the elements during rough filming conditions.
2. Film crew
National average salary: ₹26,150 per month
Primary duties: The term "film crew" is an umbrella term for the many roles crew members work to provide hands-on assistance in nearly every department involved with the active shooting of a film, including lighting, sound, props and camera operation. Their duties vary depending on the department they serve, but responsibilities may include managing supplies, running errands, setting up and tearing down equipment. Some film crew roles include grips and gaffers who work in lighting, as well as a plethora of other roles such as boom operators and script supervisors.
3. Production assistant
National average salary: ₹14,758 per month
Primary duties: A production assistant (PA) assists with various people in filmmaking roles, their duties spanning people management, time management, organisation and communications. This is a common entry-level position for someone pursuing a career working on a set in the film industry.
Types of production assistants:
Set PAs: They work on a film set and can be part of various departments that make their job details vary. For example, a PA in the wardrobe department may iron clothes, while a PA in another department could pull up gaffer tape. A set PA can typically expect to help talent get to where they need to be in a timely fashion, setting up equipment and running errands for directors and producers.
Office PAs: These professionals work in a production company office and may handle phone calls, coordinate with location managers and vendors, running errands and delivering scripts or daily footage.
Post Production PAs: They assist postproduction filmmakers like editors and producers by cataloging footage, managing data storage, helping scan through film and gathering additional supplies.
4. Camera operator
National average salary: ₹16,464 per month
Primary duties: A camera operator shoots footage using a film camera and equipment like Steadicam setups and dollies. They also collaborate with film directors and directors of photography (DPs) and perform various duties, like carrying a camera and capturing balanced footage during moving shots. Their major objective is to shoot the movie scenes so that it is clear and meets the DP's and director's vision for the story.
Read more: How To Take a Professional Photo: A Complete Guide
National average salary: ₹20,734 per month
Primary duties: An animator works with clients like producers and directors to understand their concepts and create animation meeting their expectations. They design background sets, objects, characters and animation environments using digital animation tools. They also liaise with special effect departments to append objects and unique characters into the footage.
6. Video editor
National average salary: ₹16,581 per month
Primary duties: A video editor's role is in postproduction. They take and edit the footage into the final project to create the movie, teaser or trailers to promote the film. They also collaborate with the director to select the best shots, correct lighting and colour and add dialogue and sound.
7. Sound technician
National average salary: ₹23,105 per month
Primary duties: Sound technicians play an important role during the film shoot and in post-production. Their primary duty is to operate the equipment that records, mixes and improves sound captured for a film project. They are also responsible for setting up mics, collaborating with a film crew to place sound devices in the best locations, monitoring sound recording and ensuring the set is quiet to record the clearest sound. In post-production, they clean the noise in the recordings and work with the video editor to append it into the final project.
8. Lighting technician
National average salary: ₹16,512 per month
Primary duties: A lighting technician, also known as a gaffer, is a film electrician responsible for setting up lighting kits according to a DP's instructions. They use advanced electrical knowledge and creative lighting skills to adequately light a scene to the story's specifications, angle lights, determine lighting setups for scenes, manage equipment in a lighting kit and maintain everyone's safety regarding the use of electricity and powerful lights.
9. Fashion designer
National average salary: ₹19,974 per month
Primary duties: A fashion designer designs and selects clothes for actors and other artists on a television or film project. They work with writers and directors to understand the factors that influence the clothes to be worn by actors according to a time period, plot or character the actor is playing. As per the requirement, they buy clothing materials and accessories and create the look to fit actors in costumes.
Read more: What Is a Fashion Designer? Qualification, Salary and Skills
National average salary: ₹64,713 per month
Primary duties: The director looks after the creation of the film with the help of producers and assistant directors. In the preproduction phase, they work with art directors, writers and DPs to visualise the script, cast lead actors and supporting actors, choose appropriate shooting locations and finalise the design of sets. During shooting, they guide and instruct the actors and make decisions regarding the style and execution of the story. In the post-production phase, they collaborate with video editors and sound artists to create the final product and also reshoot for missing or improper footage.
Read more: How To Become an Actor: A Complete Guide
11. Executive producer
National average salary: ₹6,81,007 per year
Primary duties: An executive producer finances the film and makes important creative decisions like the casting of actors, story execution and location selection. They are also responsible for securing funding, creating a marketing budget, finding additional financiers, overseeing the production and postproduction and sharing feedback with producers and directors. They also supervise the daily progress of the filmmaking and ensure the quality of the content.
Related: How To Become A Movie Producer (With Skills And Salary)
12. Makeup artist
National average salary: ₹16,180 per month
Primary duties: A makeup artist works together with different stakeholders, like hairstylists, costume designers and others in the art department, to create the makeup look of characters in the film. They ensure the makeup looks are as per the time period of the film, character traits and chronology of the movie plot. They also use prosthetics and other advanced makeup techniques to create special-effect makeups.
Related: How To Become A Movie Makeup Artist (With Duties And Skills)
National average salary: ₹24,832 per month
Primary duties: A cinematographer works together with the director to set the camera position to capture every frame of the scene, character emotions, scenery and emotions of the story. They also instruct lighting professionals to provide the right amount of light, lead camera operators to place cameras at right angles, guide designers to provide props and add other lifelike elements to the setting of the scene.
National average salary: ₹25,327 per month
Primary duties: A producer's primary duty is to manage the business prospects of the film production, like finding scripts, securing funds and hiring DPs and directors. They also organise everything and manage the timeline of the film production. They ensure the quality of the story, get additional funding and report the progress of the project to the financiers and production company.
Read more: What Does a Producer Do? (With Average Salary and Skills)
National average salary: ₹58,989 per month
Primary duties: A choreographer creates dance steps according to the dance numbers and teaches the steps to artists to perform on screen. Depending upon the film, they work on a small or large portion of the film. They may create and teach small or large group numbers, individual numbers and pairs in a variety of dance styles, including ballroom, hip-hop and tap. Choreographers spend time before production begins, guiding performers through the moves and providing additional assistance and instruction while on set.
Related: How To Become A Set Designer (With Duties And Career Tips)
Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at the time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.
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