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Production Assistant Interview Questions

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  1. Why do you want a career as a video production assistant? See answer
  2. What responsibilities have you had in past production assistant positions? See answer
  3. What was your typical workday like as a production assistant? See answer
  4. Can you tell me how you deal with high-pressure situations? See answer
  5. How do you make sure you are efficient at work and maximize time? See answer
  6. You’re provided with a list of 20 different items to procure for the five principal actors and actresses in a production. How would you handle fining the items overnight to be ready for production start at 5 a.m.?
  7. Can you detail the experience you have in production?
  8. Why are you interested in working with our company?
  9. Can you tell about a time you made a mistake on the job and what you did to resolve the issue?
  10. What do you find most fulfilling about being a production assistant?
  11. What characteristics do you have that help you work well under pressure?
  12. What do you find most challenging about being a production assistant?
  13. What has been one of your most interesting assignments while working as a production assistant?
  14. What steps do you take to help rebuild a communication breakdown at work?
  15. What actions do you typically take to help build a positive rapport with your colleagues?
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6 Production Assistant Interview Questions and Answers

Q:

Why do you want a career as a video production assistant?

A:

The applicant should reveal their value to the employer with their skills and abilities. It helps you determine what drove them to enter film or video production. If they don’t volunteer a specific event that spurred their interest in film and video, prod them for this personal anecdote. The event and its context give insight into their career motivation.

What to look for in an answer:

  • Share a personal anecdote
  • Discuss career goals
  • Discuss creativity and organization

Example:

“My childhood enjoyment of attending films at the theater with my mother led me to want to become of making that magic. I’m applying for this entry level position so I can begin learning production firsthand. My goal is to spend a few years learning at the most basic level and move my way up the production chain.”

Q:

What responsibilities have you had in past production assistant positions?

A:

This question helps you determine the applicant’s actual understanding of the job. Many people think that every position on the film set is glamorous, and those who work in the film industry know that a production assistant must work hard and be responsible for multiple tasks. This ensures they know that they’ll be working long hours in rain, sleet, snow, cold, heat and mostly standing. It ensures that they know the proper hierarchy of management.

What to look for in an answer:

  • Show awareness of actual work conditions
  • Communicate willingness and ability to work as a team member
  • Willingness to put in long hours

Example:

“I have worked as a production assistant in an entry level position, and I essentially answered to the entire crew, but I specifically answered directly to the second-second assistant director. I was responsible for everything from getting coffee to finding umbrellas for the crew and actors. In this position, I had to stand for long periods, run errands in any weather and worked long hours.”

Q:

What was your typical workday like as a production assistant?

A:

While you may decide to hire an individual with little experience, you need to know that they are aware of what the job entails. This question ascertains their knowledge of a film or video set. They should discuss picking up and distributing sides, transportation, extras, the craft table and set lingo.

What to look for in an answer:

  • Scripts/sides
  • Scheduling
  • Managing extras

Example:

“I’d hit the set, check in with the second-second assistant director and pick up sides. After nabbing a grab-and-go breakfast from craft, I’d meet with extras while distributing sides to the grip. I’d help the extras with their paperwork and find out my assignment for the day. My experience leans toward working in the lock-up position.”

Q:

You’re provided with a list of 20 different items to procure for the five principal actors and actresses in a production.How would you handle finding the items overnight to be ready for production start at 5 a.m.?

A:

This question helps you determine their planning and organization skills. It also determines how they handle pressure under tough time constraints.

What to look for in an answer:

  • Organizational skills
  • Retail knowledge
  • Handling pressure

Example:

“I’d use mapping software to determine the closest retail outlets to the set. I’d compare their inventory with the listed needs using their websites. Then I would plan my route and shop the stores in the order they occurred. Once completed, I’d return to the set so that I could give props the items before the deadline.

Q:

Can you tell me how you deal with high-pressure situations?

A:

This question lets you know the applicant’s ability to handle stress and their coping techniques. They should exhibit planning skills, good time management and flexibility.

What to look for in an answer:

  • Planning and organization skills
  • Time management
  • Stress coping techniques

Example:

“I plan things out in advance, adhering to time management techniques that help me maximize my time. I’m very organized. When something comes up, I use the flexibility I built into my schedule to accommodate it. I run and do yoga to alleviate stress when I’m not working.”

Q:

How do you make sure you are efficient at work and maximize time?

A:

A candidate's response to this question can help you determine their priorities at work and their organizational skills. Additionally, it can reveal their critical thinking capabilities and how well they work under pressure.

The candidate's response should emphasize:

  • Ability to prioritize and organize
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Effective use of time

A response to this question may look like this:

Example:

"I try to maximize my time at work by planning out as much as possible. I make a list of the things I can take care of right away and prioritize those because I know others depend on me doing a good job. Additionally, I use a GPS to find the best routes when driving so I spend as little time as possible stuck in traffic.

Depending on my tasks for the day, I try to complete my off-set errands early so all props and supplies are ready for the day. Additionally, I like to be available and present in case I am needed to help with extras. Each day is different, but I don't leave until my assignment for the day has been completed so I understand my schedule has to be flexible."

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