The Script Supervisor (which has been titled Continuity Coordinator) is the Director’s extra set of eyes, and is directly responsible to, and assists the Director in the performance of specific production duties, and implements the Director’s vision, directorial decisions, modifications to the script, and implementing the cast and crew policies of the film company. The Script Supervisor will also work in close cooperation with the Production Manager (PM) and may assist him/her in the gathering of certain production information.
The Script Supervisor is mainly responsible for maintaining the continuity of everything in the scene (on both the script and actual shoots) that corresponds to the next ordered scene, keeping track of shoot takes, and making detailed notes for the Director and the film editor(s). The Script Supervisor must understand the Director’s vision, read, understand and breakdown the entire script in certain ways, and work to maintain the shooting schedule as set by the Director. The Script Supervisor is seen as one of the most important jobs on the production team, and is therefore employed on all feature productions and on productions where the Director requires the services of a Script Supervisor. The Script Supervisor serves for a sufficient period in order to satisfactorily carry out his/her pre-production, production, and post-production responsibilities.
Duties During PRE-PRODUCTION:
1. Is acquiring a thorough knowledge and understanding of the filming process for each scene.
2. Learns the paperwork end of the job, and the procedures for their handling and distribution.
3. Prints out the script breakdowns of the production software.
4. Reads the script closely to know what each scene entails, and to make annotations and production notes.
5. Goes over the storyboards with the Director.
6. Goes over the physical needs for each scene with the Director.
7. Recording accurately and in detail all changes in dialogs and actions made by the Director.
8. Gets shot list from the Director and marks it according to your job’s needs.
9. Does a continuity breakdown by each scene, listing what the characters of each scene wears and handles, and how many props, set dressings and anything else that can move in each scene.
10. Times out the script scene-by-scene, and totals the final footage in hours and minutes.
Duties During PRODUCTION (Begins when shoots are scheduled):
1. Becomes familiar with cast and crew members.
2. Receives the call sheet and production report from the 1st AD, and makes sure everything is as planned and that you are prepared for the day’s scenes.
3. Coordinates the activities of the Assistant to the Script Supervisor, if hired.
4. Goes over each scene with the Director, preparatory to shooting the scenes, verifying camera angles, actors’ lines and their positions, positions of camera(s) and lighting, and mics, and all actions in the scene.
5. After conferring with the Director, makes determinations for what to especially observe.
6. Assists the Director in the performance of other duties, in accordance with his instructions, and help as needed.
7. Assists the Director at rehearsals, and any continuing auditions.
8. Timing all rehearsals and takes by stop watch, and recording all timings.
9. Prompting, and running lines with, actors, unless there is a Dialog Director.
FOR EACH SCENE, OR DIFFERENT SHOT DURING SHOOTING:
10. Makes sure that everything and everybody needed during production will be on hand, in the right place at the right time and in the proper condition for production purposes.
11. Works safely, as specified by the Building and Safety Code and fire laws, and any other safety regulation(s) and practice(s).
12. Generally stays with the camera while preparations are being made for shots.
13. Looks over the arrangement of background and atmospheric action
14. Makes notes to keep track of all moveable things being shot in each scene, such as actors’ motions, moving props, and moving set dressings.
15. Takes digital camera photos of props, set dressings, actors in their costumes and their hairstyles, before and after each take.
16. When shooting begins, maintains detailed , accurate and current records, and keeping record of scene and take numbers each take, and marking each take as acceptable or not for film printing, for the film editors to work with.
17. Annotates the script according to what is continually determined and modified by the Director, such as action blocking, interpretation and/or editing, and comments made by him, or to him from the DP or the Production Mixer/Sound Director.
18. Checks with the Director, and notes and transcribes to the script all action to be done and where and for how long, actor condition(s), position(s), and distances from the camera(s), additional progressions, and any deviations from the script.
19. Checks with the DP and records camera angles, lense used, filters used, time codes, lighting, T-stop, frame rate or shutter angle variation from normal, and focus changes, such as zooms and closeups.
20. Checks with the Wardrobe Director to record and make sure there is continuity of costumes, accessories, hair and makeup, and any conditions and arrangements of such preceding and following each shot.
21. Checks with the Production Designer for current concept artwork and storyboards.
22. Checks with the Prop Master and Set Dresser to record fixed and hand props and dressings and any variation in condition because of use thereof during the shot.
23. Checking off each shot on the shot list when finalized.
24. Gives information needed to the DP, and1st and 2nd Assistant Camera Operator, and the Production Mixer/Sound Director, for slating and notation in the camera and sound report records.
25. At the close of each shooting day, apprises the Director of (1) any scheduled scenes on the shot list left unfilmed, (2) omitted or (3) incomplete, of (4) any planned or required wild sound takes not recorded, and of (5) any camera or (6) actor or (7) object positioning or movement which may violate the action line and thereby result in a possible mismatch or disorientation, which may cause editing problems later.
26. Gets the list of scenes planned for the following day’s shooting schedule from the Director or the 1st AD.
Duties During PRODUCTION and POST-PRODUCTION:
1. Completing all forms which need to be sent to the PM for final disposition and filing.
2. Organizing, cleaning up and delivering to the Director, Producer and the Film Editor at the close of the production, or within a few days thereafter, the shooting script with all script notes, take records, scene changes, sketches, concept artwork, storyboards, and all photos, plus all comments, additions, deletions or omissions which have occurred during production.
3. Carrying out other duties that may asked by the PM or the Director.