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Production assistant jobs are a great way to learn the ropes in preparation for a career in the film and television industry as well as the radio broadcast industry. Typically, there are four different types of production assistant jobs in the entertainment industry. These positions are feature film or movie production assistants, television production assistants, radio production assistants and music video production assistants. Production assistants also are categorized as either office production assistants or set production assistants.
Office production assistant jobs are generally entry-level positions in the production industry. An office production assistant's job duties generally entail things such as getting coffee, making copies of scripts, deliveries and answering phones in the office. Support services are provided to those outside the office, and many times, a task such as arranging lunch for producers and others working with the production team is common. This position is much like that of an administrative assistant who handles such tasks.
Set production assistant jobs belong to people who work on the physical set of the production. This can be a film, television, movie or radio production. Production assistants who work on the set work closely with the production managers and generally report to the assistant director. These positions can be on the set of a radio production, news production, music production, television or film production. The work load and length of time spent on the job depends on the show and the size of the production; television and news shows often require a longer contract than a feature film would.
A set production assistant performs such tasks as passing out scripts, handling the meal arrangements, communication between departments and opening and shutting down the set. Production assistants are usually the first on the set in the morning and the last to leave. Working 12-16 hours a day is not uncommon. Having the opportunity to work alongside actors, actresses and producers are the upside to this position. Many office production assistants and set production assistants work together when completing the duties required for this job.
There also are fashion production assistant jobs for those who work on individual fashion shows. People in these positions generally report to the show's producer. A fashion production assistant handles duties such as wardrobe setup and organization, show details such as deliveries and food arrangement for the staff and models. Experience in this position can lead to a job as a fashion show producer. Depending on the size of the fashion show, this position can last from days to months.
Generally, production assistant jobs can lead to other positions within the industry. Working as a production assistant is typically a steppingstone to a higher-paying position. Those who work hard can generally find advancement rather quickly.