What Is a Creative Producer?

Keaton Robbins | January 24, 2023

a man holds up his phone to show a female co-worker, who's sitting on the couch beside him.

A creative producer is a professional that makes our screens come alive.

In the past, a creative producer was responsible for getting an initial idea to an eventual result. Decades ago, the eventual outcome would be a movie or a commercial. A creative producer was responsible for the script development, personnel management, and day-to-day management of the project.

In this article

  1. What Does a Creative Producer Do?
  2. Educational Requirements
  3. Essential Skills
  4. Popular Creative Producers
  5. Jerry Bruckheimer
  6. Ava DuVernay
  7. Kathleen Kennedy
  8. Final Thoughts

A creative producer is a highly skilled individual who must wear many hats. The development of social media platforms means that a creative producer must know the latest trends and the best way to market their latest project.

A career as a creative producer can involve working in online media, film and television production, and advertising and marketing. 

The creative producer will take an initial idea and develop it until it reaches final production. They are responsible for hiring and managing the artists and talent for the project. The creative producer will supervise the daily progress of the project. 

What Does a Creative Producer Do?

A creative producer typically has some experience in making a film. These professionals can take a simple idea and turn it into an entertaining movie. It is a long and challenging road from the concept to the final film.

The creative producer might have an excellent idea for a movie, so they must find the right scriptwriter to deliver their desired vision. They will work together, writing and editing the script until it is perfect.

The next step is finding the right director for their project. The creative producer will then hire a production crew, and he will then engage the cast and oversee their management. 

Once the creative producer has everyone in place, he must find a producer to fund the project. The creative producer will supervise and manage the daily production of the project, and he ensures that the project’s original vision is realized.

The creative producer and the director will mentor and advise the cast. They will explain their vision and help the actors, voice actors, and other talent understand what is expected.

When it comes to commercial advertisements, the relationship between the creative producer and voice over talent becomes significant. The voice talent will have less than a minute to communicate their message, so the creative producer’s input is crucial.

Educational Requirements

Some creative producers work their way up from the bottom. They begin their career as a production assistant and learn as they go. The more they know about the production process, the easier the path to becoming a creative producer.

Those following an academic route should earn a university degree in journalism, writing, film, or communications. A creative producer typically has experience with editing and art direction.

Essential Skills

A good creative producer must have excellent time management and communication skills. They must be comfortable collaborating and sharing ideas with colleagues. When considering a career as a creative producer, the following skills should be on your resume:

  • Video production
  • Film production
  • Art direction
  • Digital media
  • Creative content production
  • Media production
  • Editing

A creative producer must be good with people; they are responsible for the day-to-day challenges of a project and for resolving any problems that might arise. They are problem solvers, managers, and flexible and independent workers. Creative producers must attend meetings whenever their presence is required, so dedication and perseverance are needed.

Movie fans usually recognize the director’s name but sometimes overlook the creative producer’s name. The creative producer is the person that has the most influence on the development of a creative project. We find these unsung film heroes behind the scenes, but there are a few that you may recognize.

Jerry Bruckheimer

Jerry Bruckheimer is the most influential creative producer to have ever graced a production set. He began his career producing commercials for a New York advertising firm. He partnered with Don Simpson and moved to film production, where he boasts many box office hits such as Flashdance’, and ‘Top Gun’.

After Simpson died in 1996, Bruckheimer went out on his own and continued to produce smash hits such as ‘Enemy of the State’, ‘Armageddon’ and the much-anticipated sequel ‘Top Gun: Maverick’.

Ava DuVernay

Ava DuVernay has found incredible success with her movie ‘A Wrinkle in Time’. This extraordinary film was Duvernay’s adaptation of a fantasy book written by Madeleine L’Engle.

She has crushed racial stereotypes by being the first black woman to release a movie that grossed over a hundred million dollars. She trades in on her fame to help her produce films that are important to her. She uses her films to communicate her views and opinions.

She has produced ‘13th’, ‘Selma’ and a Netflix series ‘When They See Us’. Her passion projects show her need to make films that tell important stories about the realities of injustices.

Kathleen Kennedy

Kennedy started her career when she produced ‘E.T. the Extraterrestrial’ in 1982. She went on to produce massive hits like ‘Back to the Future’, ‘The Goonies’, and ‘Jurassic Park’.

She was named president of Lucasfilm in 2012. Since then, she has been a hands-on, creative producer of every ‘Star Wars’ film released and very involved in producing the fifth installment of the ‘Indiana Jones’ film series.

Kathleen Kennedy is an incredibly talented creative producer overseeing the development of over 60 films that grossed over 12 billion dollars. 

Final Thoughts

A creative producer is one of the most influential people when making a movie. They will take an idea and make it into an entertaining film. They are masters of everything, from helping with the script to editing the final cuts. Every movie has a creative producer that poured their sweat and tears into the project. Kudos to the unsung heroes.

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