NFTS Scotland Diploma: Production Accounting for Film and Television



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This part-time diploma course, delivered in partnership with the Production Guild, aims to equip students with the skills required for a career as a film or television Production Accountant.

This course aims to give students the expertise to succeed in this demanding role, as well as the opportunity to make key contacts to move to a career in the film and television sector. The course is run as a blended learning course with the majority of the sessions online with some face-to-face tuition in Glasgow over 10 months.

Production Accountants calculate finances, work out the cost of a production, communicate with financiers (companies or individuals who provide the funding) and control the cash flow, or spending. This is a demanding role that requires a level head, self-confidence and strong communication skills.

In pre-production, Production Accountants help the Producers and Production Managers to prepare budgets and Estimated Final Cost Reports. 

During production, they oversee all payments, manage payroll, petty cash and foreign currency and keep accurate financial records. They help monitor budgets, analyse spending and provide daily or weekly cost reports. They also produce cost forecasts to evaluate the impact of any production changes.

The National Film and Television School Production Accounting Diploma is ideally suited for those already working in a finance / accountancy role and who are keen to move into the film and television sector.  It is also suitable for those in more junior roles within Film & TV Production Accounts departments looking to move up.

The course will run every 2nd Saturday of the month (09:00-11:00am and 12:00-14:00pm), followed by an evening session on the last Monday of every month (6:45-8:45pm).


This course will cover:

  • Production set up and implementation of systems
  • Budgeting
  • Sources of finance and treatment of funds
  • Completion guarantors
  • Cash flow, forecasting and cost reporting
  • Working with inherited budgets
  • Working with multi-currency
  • Running the project
  • Contract and employment law
  • Copyright and licences
  • Taxation and insurance
  • Pre production, production and post-production
  • Production audits
  • Management skills

Where opportunities present themselves we would look at assisting students with work experience/production shadowing, however the NFTS recognises that in the current climate this may not be possible.


The course is run by Neil Cairns, who has many years of industry experience as a production account. He has worked on films including The Inbetweeners Movie, T2 Trainspotting, We Need to Talk About Kevin and Shame.

Fees and funding options

Fees for this course are as follows:

£5950 (2022 rate)

NFTS Scotland is delighted to be able to offer this Diploma at a special rate. We can do this thanks to Scottish Government support and a different delivery structure which is less costly, so we are very pleased to be able to pass on these savings to participants.   

NFTS Scotland bursaries are not available for this course.

Please read our Alternative Funding Avenues document which points you in the direction of a few potential sources of funding. 

Entry requirements

A proven interest in film and television production and an ability to work as part of a team are essential.

We would expect those applying to have academic or vocational qualifications in accounting or be able to demonstrate competency through work experience. Previous experience of working in an Accounts environment will be taken into account when considering applications.

If you are not an EEA National, you must already be in possession of a UK visa valid for the duration of this course.  We are unable to accept your application if you do not.

How to apply

Application deadline: 18 Mar 2022

Applicants must complete the online application form and submit the following supporting materials:

  • Please tell us about the likely challenges of working as the Production Accountant on a low budget British Feature Film (no more than two sides of A4)

You can apply online by clicking on BEGIN YOUR APPLICATION below. We are happy to receive applications at any time up until the midnight of the application deadline date.

Begin your application