Budget Line Items

We all know that money doesn’t grow on trees, but a good budget can make the money you do have go a lot further. There is an infinite number of little things you’ll spend money on while making your film, but below are the key line items (or categories) you should include in your production budget:

(This isn’t necessarily an exhaustive list)

Above the Line

  • Script & Story Rights
  • Producer
  • Director
  • Cast

Below the Line

  • Crew
  • Travel
  • Hotels & Lodging
  • Catering & Craft Services
  • Camera
  • Lighting
  • Grip & Electric
  • Sound
  • Locations
  • Art Department
  • Construction
  • Vehicle / Trailer / Misc. Equipment Rental
  • Production Office
  • Petty Cash
  • Film Stock / Lab
  • DIT / Data Storage
  • BTS / Behind the Scenes / Photography
  • Shipping
  • Insurance / Permits
  • Contingencies

Post Production

  • Post Production Team
  • Editing
  • Visual Effects
  • Color Correction
  • Sound / ADR
  • Music
  • Final Mix / Compression
  • DVD Set Up
  • Publicity / Marketing
  • Premiere
Some of these things may not apply to your project, and there may be other things specific to your project that we didn’t include, but the majority of these items should be key categories in your budget.

Making a film soon?

We can help you organize your shoot. Check out our Digital Call Sheets and Cast & Crew Management software.

Leslie Ruiz

Leslie is a filmmaker, artist, and businesswoman; she’s also a devout list maker, shops for relaxation, & has a strong aversion to the color red.

Related Posts

Line Producer Job Description

Interested in becoming a Line Producer? Here are the job responsibilities, skills, salary breakdown, and career guidance you need to...
Read More

Production Coordinator - Job Description and Salary

What does a Production Coordinator do on a film production crew? A lot, actually! This guide contains everything you need to know about a film or TV...
Read More

7 Keys of Pre-Production

Read More