It takes a lot of manpower to make a movie, not to mention good talent, a good story… and money. That’s where executive producers come in. The role of an executive producer varies depending on the project that’s at hand. Is it a television series? Is it a blockbuster movie? Is it a documentary? In the general sense of the word, executive producers are responsible for the quality of the production itself. They’re part of a big team of people that chooses the most marketable projects, the ones with the most possibility for big profits. Executive producers are also in charge of actually marketing and promoting the projects they’re involved in, so attending national events and festivals as well as other public relations events isn’t uncommon.
Executive producers such as Braeburn Entertainment founder Richard Iott are well-versed in business aspects and have a lot of legal, financial and practical knowledge overall. They’re well-liked, have a huge network of colleagues, friends and acquaintances and have a passion for the silver screen. “I was President and CEO of Seaway Food Town for a huge part of my life. I just took on the family business, but my true passion was always the movies,” recalls Executive Producer Richard Iott. “In high school, I created many short films. In college I majored in drama.” These days many celebrities are able to cross over into movie and TV production and have production companies of their own, just like Richard Iott’s Braeburn Entertainment. Stars like Tim Allen, Drew Barrymore, Tom Cruise, Nick Nolte, Jodie Foster and Sally Field join the cast of producers.
“The 70s Show” and Demi Moore’s famous ex, actor Ashton Kutcher, is also well-known for his production chops. He’s created, produced and hosted MTV’s “Punk’d” for a number of years. “In this TV series hidden cameras catch celebrities reacting to pranks,” says Executive Producer Richard Iott. The former Calvin Klein model also produced “Beauty and the Geek,” “Adventures of Hollyhood,” “The Real Wedding Crasher,” “Killers” and “Opportunity Knocks.” “Ashton Kutcher’s production company is called Katalyst Films. He runs it with his partner Jason Goldberg,” says Executive Producer Richard Iott. These days he’s playing Walden Schmidt in “Two and a Half Men” and is believed to earn $20 million for the year.