A film or TV drama starts with an idea. The idea might come from a director, a producer or a screenwriter. However it begins, the idea needs to be developed and rights need to be agreed, a process that can take years. A script needs to be drafted, money needs to be raised and the right actors needs to be found. Casting directors and lawyers are heavily involved at this stage. Once the finance is in place and the key creative team put together, the production is "green-lit", which means it's ready to move into pre-production or prep.

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