How Much Do People in Video Production Make?

by Terri Williams

Video production can take many forms, ranging from television video productions, such as sitcoms, newscasts, documentaries and commercials to corporate, religious and educational video productions. The salaries for video production teams are as varied as the types of individuals who make up the production team. However, their salaries are usually higher than the $45,790 earned by the average U.S. worker.

Producers and Directors

Producers handle the business aspects of producing a video, set the budget and hire the director and the rest of the video production team. Directors select actors, handle rehearsals and give instructions regarding the actors’ performances. According to May 2012 salary data from the BLS, producers and directors earned a mean annual wage of $92,390, or a mean hourly wage of $44.42. Producers and directors earned the highest salaries in the management, scientific and technical consulting services industry with an annual salary of $164,430. The most producers and directors were employed in the motion picture and video industries, and earned $114,450, while producers and directors in radio and television broadcasting made $67,110.

Video Editors

Video editors use computer equipment to assemble video footage in logical sequence. BLS May 2012 salary data indicates that video editors earned $64,060, or $30.80 hourly. Video editors earned the highest salary and had the highest employment levels in the motion picture and video industries, with an average mean wage of $71,120. The second highest-paying employers were in the software publishing industry, with an annual salary of $68,490. The second most populous industry was radio and television broadcasting, which paid $55,820.

Camera Operators

Camera operators film or record images from different angles, while making sure that the camera remains in focus. They earned a mean $49,010 annually, or $23.56 hourly, as of May 2012, according to data from the BLS. Camera operators earned the highest salaries working for the federal executive branch of the government, with an average salary of $65,610. They found the most employment in radio television broadcasting, but only earned $39,150. The motion picture and video industries paid an annual salary of $57,100.


Actors depict characters in video productions. It is difficult to track annual wages for actors because they don’t work full-time. However, they earned a mean hourly wage of $35.97. Actors earned the highest salaries and found the most work in the motion picture and video industries, with an hourly wage of $44.61. The second highest-paying employers were in advertising, public relations and related services industries, which paid $40.68 hourly. Actors earned $31.25 in radio and television broadcasting.

About the Author

Terri Williams began writing professionally in 1997, working with a large nonprofit organization. Her articles have appeared in various online publications including Yahoo, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report University Directory, and the Center for Digital Ethics and Policy at Loyola University Chicago. Williams has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Photo Credits

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