Assistant Director (1st)

What do Assistant Director (1st)s do?

The First Assistant Director (AD) is the director's right hand person, taking responsibility for a number of important practicalities so that the director is free to concentrate on the creative process. During pre-production, First ADs break down the script into a shot by shot storyboard, and work with the director to determine the shoot order, and how long each scene will take to film. They then draw up the overall shooting schedule (a timetable for the filming period). Once the film is in production, Firsts are in charge of making sure that every aspect of the shoot keeps to this schedule.

First ADs' main duties are assisting the director, coordinating all production activity, and supervising the cast and crew. They are also in charge of a department of other assistant directors and runners. Overall, they provide the key link between the director, the cast and the crew, while also liaising with the production office, and providing regular progress reports about the shoot.

Before the shoot, the Firsts' main task is to create the filming schedule, working in careful consultation with the director in order to fulfill his or her creative ambitions. When drawing up the shooting schedule, First ADs must also be aware of budgetary constraints, cast availability and script coverage. Preparing the storyboard, overseeing the hiring of locations, props and equipment, and checking weather reports, are all key pre-production duties for Firsts. During production, they must ensure that everyone is on standby and ready for the director's cue for action.

First ADs' core responsibility is to keep filming on schedule by driving it forward, so they frequently make announcements and give directions to coordinate the cast and crew. They also control discipline on the set, supervise the other assistant directors, and oversee the preparation of the daily 'call sheet' (a document detailing daily shooting logistics, which is distributed to all cast and crew). Firsts are also responsible for health and safety on set or location, and must take action to eliminate or minimize hazards at all times.

First ADs must be authoritative team leaders and motivators, while also being approachable team players. They need exceptional organizational and time management skills. The ability to plan ahead, trouble shoot and pay close attention to detail is vital in this role. Being an excellent communicator, with tact and diplomacy skills, is also essential as they must routinely deal with problems or even crisis situations. They must also constantly prioritize tasks, and may be frequently interrupted, the ability to multi task is crucial. Firsts work long and often unsocial hours on a freelance basis, so a strong commitment to the job is essential. As they also usually work under highly pressurized and stressful conditions, a flexible and positive approach is highly valued.

There are 1465 members with the job title Assistant Director (1st) on Media Match

Assistant Director (1st) jobs which have appeared on the Media Match jobs board:

New York, NY
1st AD
Los Angeles, CA
Assistant Director
New York, NY
Los Angeles, CA
Assistant Director
Brentwood, TN
Seeking Assistant Director for Short Horror Thriller
Chicago, IL (no/low paid/commission only)

View all jobs on Media Match

Job description sources include (but are not limited to), and wikipedia.