Production assistant

production assistant , also known as a PA , is a member of the film crew and is a job title used in filmmaking and television for a person responsible for various aspects of a production . The job of a PA can be varied according to the production and the production of the production is unionized .

Production assistants on films are sometimes attached to individual actors or filmmakers .


In the United States , Production Assistants in union and non-union workplaces facing various tasks on the film set of a filmmaking project. Most union PAs are asked to complete tasks with a certain focus. Union PAs are only a few of the many tasks that can be dealt with in the movie. For example, union Production Assistants may be asked to evaluate a film’s daily rushes for a film director or help the film editordecipher ways to alter a scene. Those who are non-union Production Assistants are usually asked to complete a variety of tasks by a department head on a film set. The tasks of a non-union can match those of a union PA. These tasks are to be completed by either a union or a non-union. They are related to the film production, such as setting up a props on the set and negotiating with the director. However, non-union may be required to complete a wide array of tasks that may not necessarily be associated with the film. For example, non-union Can be asked for a data entry into a computer, a wash dishes, a spell in the mail room, and a buy coffee for department heads.[1]

Most PAs work with many people. Therefore, you must be proficient with their communication skills. Traditionally, PAs communicate with the city by walkie-talkies on the movies. HOWEVER, PAs Can Be Asked By Any member of the movie crew to complete at job using interpersonal communication (talking to Each Other in person) gold across technological devices Such As a cell phone. Aspiring PAs must also be attentive to the future. Former Production Assistant Caleb Clark recommends that people who want to be PAs must be avoided, stay alert at all times. Clark elucidates that PAs must be vigilant because they could be asked for anytime. In addition to their improving their skills in communication and readiness, they must adapt to their film set environment. Many movie sets that Production Assistants work on may vary in luxuries. Since film sets are made with different amounts of amenities, the production assistant will need to complete certain assignments. Therefore,[2] They also need to be aware that they may need to bring their own form of transportation on the set. Due to the need for some of these things, they should consider bringing their own vehicles to the table so that they can be completed. [3] The people who normally ask for help in the film crew. Those who ask a production assistant for the production of the film crew, especially the production coordinator , screenwriter , producer and especially the film’s director. [4]

Television and feature film

In unionized television and feature film , production assistants are usually divided into different categories: “Set PA”, “Truck PA”, “PA Rentals”, “Office PA”, Gold “Set Runner” and “Extra PA or Daily” – Variations United States or Canada.

Office PAs usually spend most hours in the respective show of production, handling of tasks, deliveries, script copies, lunch pick-ups, and related tasks in coordination with the production manager and production coordinator .

Set PAs work on the physical set of the production, whether on location or on a sound stage. They report to the assistant director (AD) department and key set PA if one is so designated. Duties include echoing (calling out) “rolls” and “cuts”, locking up (making sure nothing interferes with a take), wrangling talent (actors) and background, facilitating communication between departments, distributing paperwork and radios, and related tasks as mandated by the ADs. Set PAs usually work 12- to 16-hour days with the possibility of the first day of the day.


Commercial Set PAs share the same responsibilities as their Television and Feature Film counterparts (see “Set PAs” above), but also inherit additional responsibilities traditionally encompassed by other departments in the television and feature film structure. These responsibilities may be divided into two categories, such as dollies, skates, director’s chairs and pop-ups, which may be shortstaffed. It is not atypical for a commercial set of one minute, and the next minute assisting the electricians or grips with a set-up. A select group of commercial set PAs are given the responsibility of driving and managing the production and camera cube trucks.

Set PAs in business are more commonly used by the production coordinator and / or production manager as opposed to an AD or key set PA. However, many commercial ADs will.

Standard rate for a commercial in the Los Angeles area is a flat rate of $ 200 per day. On February 1, 2008, benefits for qualifying freelance PAs became available through the Producer’s Health Benefits Plan. [5]

Union vs. non-union

In North America , no union actually exists for production assistants, but the affiliation of a production with a union (or unions ) can affect the job responsibilities of a PA. Less unionized film productions have more positions than can be served by non-union staff; hence, PAs on such productions may take a greater variety of non-traditional duties. Examples of this would be a PA betting ( grip department) or driving a passenger van ( teamster / transportation department). PAs on a union production generally have a variety in their job duties when they are not in a union. [6]

In British Columbia, which has the third largest film and television production sector in North America, PAs are represented by the Director’s Guild of Canada. Production Assistants are represented by the DGC in the Bureau of the Department and work with the control of the traffic control, the echoing rolls, the firewatching, and the liaising with the public and the rental owners. The Key-PA is in charge of all the PAs and is the 1st ADs right-hand man From this position DGC PA can be moved up through the Departmental Rentals or Assistant Branch (AD) Departmental Training Manager (TAL) or Training Assistant Director (TAD), respectively. Office Production Assistants work in the production office as an Office PA and they work for the Production Manager, Production Coordinator, Production Coordinator Assistant, and / or other office staff in the work-flow in the office. From this position, Office PAs can work through the office by becoming a Production Assistant Coordinator (APOC), which is unionized under IATSE 891. Pay for PAs according to the DGC Collective Agreement in BC$ 205.00 (non-members) to $ 215.00 (members) for a 15-hour day. An 8-hour day is approximately $ 118.00. [7]

In Quebec , the PA Set is part of what is called the “Unit Department” or “Régie”. Usually, there is a Unit Manager, Unit Manager Assistant, PA Set, Truck PA, Runner Set, and the “dailies” as needed for street blocking and extra set ups. In other states and provinces these duties are often taken care of by the AD Department, Rentals or Transport. The Unit Manager and his / her team are the ones who deal with the daily logistics of shooting and / or in studio. [8]

There are two film unions in Quebec: IATSE 514 and AQTIS: The Quebec Alliance of Image and Sound Technicians . In both cases the PA’s are unionized.


Production assistants are also present in fields other than film and television, as a publication for the production of written articles such as books, records or any other kind of production involving the preparation of written words.

Educational and publishing companies

The tasks taken on by the PA will depend on the type of educational and / or publishing company that employs them. If the assistant works at a textbook or publishing company, they may oversee the art and composition of written works. PAs at educational companies may also oversee work in proofreading departments, as well as for freelance copy editors and authors. When looking for documents and other materials, the production of the production of the production of the product of the company. This includes items such as the format, correct file types, positioning, captions and copyright forms from authors.

If the assistant is a member of the department for a scientific or professional organization, it is important that they keep their records. They can take care of editing, writing or reading information in databases or manuscripts. Production assistants can also team up with Information Technology workers to help streamline the tasks of the publications departments since it involves keeping track of large amounts of data and information. Working with an IT department to create a specific program can improve the speed at which documents are proofed and organized. [9]

Entertainment Companies

In entertainment companies, production assignments may have to do such typeetting, printing and binding. They must also be good communicators and be good with deadlines. When working for magazines or newspapers, production assistants may need to keep track of things like individual teams and the cost of producing a physical product. Clients and stakeholders may be involved in a magazine, so PA’s have to be professional. There may also be journalists who are on deadlines or need extensions. There are also creative processes that a production assistant can be involved with. They can work with book designers or magazines to ensure a customer ‘s specifications are well suited to customers. This last piece has been completed. When printing a piece of work, production assistants may be expected to file a price list, with other publication dates, and any printing or copy issues. Even after a final piece is complete, the PA may need to ask a customer their thoughts on final product.[10]


  1. Jump up^ {{production assistant; PA. (2014). In RW Kroon, A / V a to z: An encyclopedic dictionary of media, entertainment and other Audiovisual terms. Jefferson, NC: McFarland. Retrieved from}}
  2. Jump up^ Clark, Caleb. “Production Assistant Pocket Handbook” (PDF) . Inkslinger Press.
  3. Jump up^ Griesinger, Justin. “Movie Crew Job Titles” . In Colorado Film . In Colorado Film.
  4. Jump up^ Clark, Caleb. “Production Assistant Pocket Handbook” (PDF) . Inkslinger Press.
  5. Jump up^ Producer’s Health Benefits Plan
  6. Jump up^ {{production assistant; PA. (2014). In RW Kroon, A / V a to z: An encyclopedic dictionary of media, entertainment and other Audiovisual terms. Jefferson, NC: McFarland. Retrieved from}}
  7. Jump up^ “British Columbia Minimum Wage increase” (PDF) . Director’s Guild of Canada . October 21, 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on April 24, 2012.
  8. Jump up^ Online, Maria. Maria-Online . Maria-Online . Missing or empty( help ) |title=
  9. Jump up^  Thomas-Medwid, Rachel S. “Lauren Foster.” Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, vol. 89, no. 10, Oct. 2008, pp. 1592-1593. EBSCOhost
  10. Jump up^ “Types of Publishing Job.” The Society of Young Publishers, The Publishers Association,