Schedule Management, How to Project Manage a Hollywood Film!

It’s widely considered that film and movies began in Paris on December 28, 1895, when the Lumière brothers exhibited ten of their short films.  Since then, a predominantly project-based methodology has built up around the production of films and television shows, which took off mainly after 1948.  Today, film and television production methodology covers a wide range of techniques based on genre, format, and budget.  This lecture (presented in 10 parts) will distill the project management details of a film/TV project into this presentation.  We’ll cover how the PMBOK’s 10 knowledge areas are met in the management of a film/TV project, and also discuss paperwork and forms used for communication, and other facets.

Project Time Management

Project time management is, no surprise, time-consuming. The project is divided into tasks, which are scheduled with start dates and deadlines, as well as budgets for each task. And things are constantly changing over the phases of any project, which means revising these things often.

This involves plan schedule management, which involves creating a schedule for the project and determining who is responsible for what. That means defining activities, which is not the same as making a WBS, but similar. So, you create a task list that touches on every aspect of the project.

These tasks are then put in an order that makes sense, and any dependencies between them are noted. These dependencies are then determined to be either finish-to-start (FS), finish-to-finish (FF), start-to-start (SS), or start-to-finish (SF). This is mostly for larger projects.

With the tasks now sequenced, the resources required for each must be estimated and assigned. The duration of each task is also determined at this point. All this will lead to a schedule by first figuring out the critical path and float for each task. Use a Gantt chart to place the tasks on a timeline, and then work on resource leveling to balance resource usage.

Once the schedule is made, plan to control the schedule are necessary. Earned value management is performed regularly to make sure that the actual plan is proceeding as it had been planned.

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