Postproduction And Wrap PartyThe principal photography phase is finally complete. Everyone is excited and discussing their next big project. However, production is not yet complete. A lot of work remains, not the least of which is organizing an amazing celebratory party.

This is the time when the Production Manager and Production Coordinator are the busiest. Working together, they are responsible for making sure postproduction goes smoothly, ensuring that invoices are received and paid, clearing out the offices, sending files and documents to the head office, selling production items that were purchased and no longer needed, as well as making sure all items that were rented are returned. The PM and PC also work closely with the Production Accountant on finalizing invoices, wrapping up petty cash, and completing any other task involving the PA department.

The Production Manager

The Production Manager is responsible for ensuring the crew’s petty cash fund is replenished and delivered to the Production Accountant. The PM also sorts through all PM files, removing documents that are not necessary for future reference and sending them to the head office to be archived. He works closely with the PA to create final production cost reports and prepare reports for audit.

The Production Manager creates a hand-over memo for the Producer, Postproduction Supervisor, and PA which summarizes the cost report notes, pending invoices, unpaid bills, and any other important information they will need to know. The hand-over memo can also include any issues left unresolved or tasks the PM was not able to complete.

He then creates a post mortem, a meeting and/or document summarizing production events.  A post mortem can include good and bad points that have occurred during production. This document can serve as a useful tool for later productions, showing what strategies and techniques worked well and what could be improved.

The Production Coordinator

It is up to the Production Coordinator to: keep a record of all memos and copies of letters documenting what happened to items at the end of the film; keep a running inventory list; order crew gifts (or “swag”) and crew photographs; and deliver these gifts and photos to the crew. He is also responsible for knowing what is happening to all production items, ensuring production items do not go home with crew members,  as well as forwarding the production telephone number and email addresses to the head office number.

In addition to these responsibilities, the PC also does most of the work to coordinate and host the wrap party.

The Wrap Party

The wrap party is certainly not the last thing to do during the wrap phase; however it does mark the end of production. Together, the Production Coordinator and Production Manager will coordinate the wrap party; however, the PC is responsible for the majority of it.

Production Coordinators create a draft of the wrap party’s invitation list. Since the Production Coordinator lists everyone on the crew, in the cast, and on the credit lists, this list can be extensive. Once the first draft of the invitation list is complete, the Production Coordinator and Production Manager will meet to discuss and narrow it down. During this meeting, they discuss whether spouses and guests will be invited, determine a day of the week to hold the event, and identify potential venues. At this time, the PM and PC will decide what the budget should be for the wrap party.

When creating the budget for the wrap party, there are many things the Production Coordinator will take into consideration.

  • Party date
  • Invitations
  • Party room and décor
  • Catering
  • Bar
  • License
  • Notifications
  • Music
  • Additional entertainment

All of this can get expensive, but the PC’s goal is to make sure the party is impressive to the guests while remaining within budget.