The difference between a producer and a director.

A producer and director are involved in virtually any studio film. What does each of them do?

Who is a producer?

Producer is a very versatile profession. But if we summarize its main features, then their number will include:

  • creating the necessary conditions for filming a film, series or television program (financial, organizational);
  • support of the process of publishing a picture or TV program;
  • participation in the development of the project idea, its adaptation to the needs of the audience, the wishes of the cinematographic community;
  • formation of film crews;
  • participation in the filming, editing of the film, and its release;
  • solution of problems related to product distribution - through TV channels, movies, discs, the Internet.

Thus, it is in the competence of the producer to provide a functional environment for filming a film.

Who is a director?

The director solves problems directly related to the filming process. He determines exactly how to shoot certain scenes, which actors to invite to roles, where exactly to shoot in terms of achieving the best results in terms of entertainment.

In the competence of the director - the implementation of the creative component of the project, taking into account his idea, as well as the features of the functional environment for filming, prepared by the producer. If some resources are insufficient (for example, financial resources to attract expensive actors), the director's task is to bring the quality and ratings of the film closer to those that could be achieved if more recognizable performers were invited. But no less difficult, of course, is the task of making a cool film, even if the producer managed to invite the most famous actors. A good cinematic product is the result of the work of not only celebrity performers, but also of the competent staging of their roles, and this is in the competence of the director.


The main difference between a producer and a director is in the tasks that they solve. But in most cases these are tasks of similar categories, often solved simultaneously and requiring active interaction of people occupying the appropriate key positions in the process of making a film.

The relationship between the functions of a producer and a director is often determined by historical traditions and norms that have developed in a particular cinematographic school. For example, in Hollywood it often happens that the tasks typical of a director are nevertheless solved by the producer. This can be the actual development of the project idea - and not only its adaptation to the product, the selection of actors, the organization of the filming process. According to experts in the field of the film industry, this is mainly due to the fact that the producer needs to recoup the cost of the film. The producer, most likely, will not want to entrust a significant part of the functions to the director, who can do something in his own way - experiments can negatively affect the monetization of the film.

It also happens that the functions of the producer are minimized, in turn. For example, he can be appointed responsible for solving problems that are not directly related to the creation of a cinematic product - the purchase and installation of equipment, settlements with suppliers. As a rule, this scenario is relevant for small, low-budget projects.

The question of who should have more authority - the producer or the director - is controversial. When a film studio creates one episode of a film, the preferences and decisions of the first may have an unambiguous priority; when another episode of the same film is released by the same film studio, and when the same producer and director are invited, the second can receive a greater amount of authority.

Thus, it is fair to say not that a producer and a director are fundamentally different professions, but about what specific functions are characteristic of the first and the second. They are the ones who determine what is the difference between a producer and a director. A small table will help us to more clearly consider the specifics of both types of functions.


Producer Director
Performs functions related to the preparation of the filming process, financing the project, launching the product for rentPerforms functions directly related to filming, with the choice of location, with the selection of actors
May have more authority and even perform a significant part of the director's functions in expensive, "Hollywood" filmsMay have more authority and perform a significant part of the producer's functions when creating films with a small budget
Solves problems related to the payback of the filmSolves problems of a creative nature, often not related to commercial interests