Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Film Budgeting

Budgeting is an important aspect of film production. During script development, filmmakers produce a rough budget to convince film producers and film studios to give them a greenlight for production. When and if financing is secured, a more concise film budget is produced. This document varies in length and depends largely on the scope of size of the project.
A budget is typically divided into four sections: above-the-line (creative talent), below-the-line (direct production costs), post-production (editing, visual effects, etc), and other (insurance, completion bond, etc).

Above-the-line:-In the movie industry, above-the-line expenditures are those that are negotiated or spent before filming begins. These costs can include rights for the material on which the screenplay is based; and the salaries for the screenwriter, producer, actors, director, and assistants to directors (not to be confused with assistant directors).
Similarly, in television production, above-the-line expenses include salaries for the positions mentioned above (typically all employees working under individual contracts) but are budgeted on a weekly or episodic basis for the run of a series.

Below-the-line:-In budgeting a motion picture or television production, below-the-line costs include the salaries of the non-starring cast members and the technical crew, as well as use of the film studio and its technical equipment, travel, location, and catering costs, etc. In contrast to above the line costs, the below-the-line budget is usually fixed.

Some of the positions that fall into the below the line category are: Director of photography
 Assistant director
 Dolly grip
 Key grip
 Best boy electric
 Best boy grip
 Art director
 Production assistant


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