Pre-Production: Create Success For Your Next Project

January 12, 2021

Preparation is the key to almost all successful projects. Keeping things organized, easy to understand, and accessible guarantees a smooth workflow from start to finish. Here at Launch, we take pride in our streamlined production process. By breaking down each step, we ensure that both our team and our clients know exactly what to expect along the way. No two projects are exactly the same, but here’s a peek at how we approach many of our clients’ requests.

Once we take on a client’s project and an initial meeting with the team, a creative brief is made. There’s plenty that goes into the on-boarding and creative process, but after milestones are reached, we’re off to pre-production

What is Pre-Production?

Pre-production is the absolute preparation for a project. It’s one of the three processes in video production, followed by production (filming) and post-production. Pre-pro includes script writing, budgets and logistics, hiring talent and crew, location scouting, buying props; literally everything that goes into a shoot is organized in pre-production. The more organized and detailed pre-production is, the better quality the project can be. 

To have a successful pre-production, the right team has to be in place, starting with the project manager. 

Our project manager, Deirdre, is sharing insight about the pre-production process and the document that keeps her crew in the right place at the right time. 

Deirdre straddles the line between project manager and producer, and the role she plays in a particular project determines how she facilitates pre-production. As a project manager, when she’s first brought onto a project, she goes through the creative brief, storyboard and document she needs to understand the scope of the project. 

To keep herself organized, Deirdre uses different tools to manage all the details that go into a particular project. Most important is her call sheet. 


What makes a call sheet?

Her call sheet came from years of film, commercial, and video shoots. When she couldn’t find a call sheet detailed enough, she created her own. Deirdre considers the call sheet to be the Holy Grail of pre-production. She will enter all information, from contact information for the crew to shoot locations and call times. It’s a blueprint that includes the who, what, when, and where of the production. The document also serves a record of the project, which is great if there’s a need to look back at the information.

There are plenty of great call sheet templates to help get your through pre-production like this one and this one. 

Deirdre offers this bit of advice for a successful pre-production process: “Anticipate every single thing that could go right or could go wrong and plan for it to happen.” 

If you want to experience this level of organization and much more in your next project, feel free to reach out. Our team can handle any project, regardless of size. 

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