The Executive Producer credit in television series is given to the individual(s) whose only reporting responsibility is to the studio and/or companies financing and distributing a television series. Subject to the control of the Owner, the Executive Producer has final responsibility for the creative and business aspects of producing the series. S/he will have direct authority over a majority of the producing functions throughout all phases of the series production. The informal title "Showrunner” has frequently come to serve as shorthand for a series’ Executive Producer.
Though television series are frequently writer-driven, the Executive Producer must undertake significant production responsibilities in addition to his/her writing services and responsibilities. Frequently, the Executive Producer is responsible for the creation of the series, including its concept, format and characters. In this special circumstance, the PGA gives considerable weight to such a seminal contribution, and supports the Executive Producer credit for such creators who remain engaged with the series in an ongoing supervisory capacity.
Over the course of production, the Executive Producer is expected to serve as the primary point-of-contact with the network, studio, and/or production company regarding the development, production, post-production and marketing of the series. During development of the pilot and/or series, the Executive Producer will supervise or participate in story or script meetings, approve all storylines, and supervise the creation of the series "bible.” The Executive Producer will select or approve the hiring of all series directors, as well as the casting of all series regulars, providing in-person consultation with such personnel. S/he will similarly select or approve of the hiring of key members of the producing team, such as the production manager, director of photography, and composer. The Executive Producer must supervise or approve the series budget and production schedule.
Within post-production/marketing phase, the Executive Producer will continue to consult with the network, studio and/or production company regarding such delivery requirement issues as final cuts, air dates, and standards & practices. S/he will typically select and/or approve the choice of post-production facilities and editors, providing in-person consultation with them. The Executive Producer should view and provide consultation on the dailies, and should view and appraise all cuts shown to the network or distributor. S/he will approve the final cut of each episode (including the main title sequence), and is typically consulted regarding publicity and promotional campaigns.
Subject to the control of the Owner, the Executive Producer in Television Series is expected to exercise decision-making authority over a majority of the following specific job functions:
- Consulted with the network, studio and/or production company regarding the development of the series.
- Negotiated the network license fees or any additional financing required to produce the series.
- Conceived of and/or supervised the creation of the series "bible.”
- Selected and/or approved all Department Heads (e.g., Casting, Production Design, Post-Production) and provided ongoing in-person consultation with them.
- Supervised or participated in story or script meetings, and approved all "in house” generated story outlines and scripts.
- Supervised or participated in freelance story "pitch meetings” and selected and/or approved freelance script assignments, including approval of all freelance episodic writing deals.
- Supervised and approved all final "shooting scripts.”
- Supervised and participated in all department pre-production meetings.
- Served as the primary point-of-contact for the network, studio and production company entities for creative and "tone” issues.
- Selected and/or approved the hiring of all episodic directors and provided in person consultation with them.
- Selected and/or approved the casting or recasting of series regulars with the network, production company and studio.
- Served as the primary point-of-contact for the network, studio, and production company entities for business and financial issues including license fee requirements, network breakage issues, etc.
- Negotiated the contracts for, and approved the actors hired on an episodic basis.
- Provided in-person consultation with the principal cast.
- Selected and/or approved the hiring of the unit production manager, director of photography, visual and mechanical effects team and composer and provided ongoing, in-person consultation with them.
- Approved all set designs and set dressing for sets created and built for the ongoing series.
- Selected and approved all members of the producing team, and supervised and participated in the episodic production meetings.
- Approved the choice of format (35mm, Super 35mm, 16mm, video, Hi-Def) and rawstock.
- Supervised and/or approved the preparation of the series amortization and pattern budgets.
- Approved the series’ overall production schedule, including start dates, hiatus schedules, shutdown days, etc.
- Approved, first hand, the choice of stage and production sites when filming locally.
- Selected and/or approved the hiring of the editors and provided ongoing, in-person consultation with them.
- Served as the primary point of contact for the network, studio, and production company entities for delivery requirement issues including final cuts, air dates, show timings, and standards and practices.
- Selected and/or approved choice of post-production related facilities including lab, telecine house, etc.
- Viewed the "dailies” and provided in-person consultation with the director, post production supervisor & editor.
- Viewed and appraised the first cut shown to the network.
- Participated in-person in the attainment and approval of the final cut of each episode.
- Supervised and/or approved the "spotting” of music and sound effects.
- Approved the final "dub” of each episode.
- Supervised and/or approved the main title sequence.
- Provided ongoing and in-person consultation on the publicity and promotional campaigns.
- Supervised and/or approved the series "gallery shoots.”