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Shortland Street

Weeknights at 7pm | TV2

Ten minutes with Jimmy Scott

Name: Jimmy Scott

Job Title: 1st AD (Assistant Director)

In a nutshell, what does an AD do?

The AD is the person who schedules the shoot and is responsible for the running of the set. Essentially making sure everything happens on time and as smoothly as possible.

How did you find yourself at Shortland Street?

When I finished my masters degree, a friend of mine told me there was a 2nd AD trainee position here. Having done AD work on a friend's short film I went for it and have slowly worked my way up to 1st AD.

A typical day on set for you involves...?

Organising the cast and crew. Talking to the director and the control room (where the sound recordist, vision switcher, continuity person and technical managers sit), and working with my team of 2nd and 3rd AD's.

How long have you worked at Shortland Street now?

Two and a half years.

What do you love most about the job?

Everything. I really enjoy solving the problems of making a shooting schedule work. I also love being a part of the shooting process. There is nothing better than getting the crew to finish on time with quality work.

What's one of the weirdest things you've had to deal with?

This job has changed what I think of as weird! Seeing people vomit in ED, get run over or jump off roofs all seem normal now.

What's the most challenging part of your job?

Listening to everyone. All day I'm involved in numerous conversations that are happening at once. It took a long time to learn to listen to 3 or 4 things at once and I'm still working at being able to think fast enough to answer them all.

What advice could you give people who would like to pursue a career in your field?

Buy a good watch.

I think the best AD's are born that way. It's more a personality thing (normal people don't want the job) and although you can learn the skills, it's never the same.

Oh and stay in school, don't smoke and be nice to your Mum!