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how to transfer an iMovie HD project to Final Cut Pro

1225 Views 10 Replies Latest reply: Nov 20, 2012 9:01 PM by AppleMan1958 RSS
Ronniebel Level 1 Level 1 (85 points)
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Nov 19, 2012 12:59 PM

How do I transfer an iMovie HD project to Final Cut Pro?  When I transfer that iMovie HD project to the new iMovie, it's truncating some of the video.  I want to go directly from iMovie HD to Final Cut Pro.

  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (22,150 points)

    You are referring to the iMovie HD 6? And which version of FCP?


    I've not done it this way; instead, I've done it the other way round: created/edit clips in Final Cut Express and then moved them over to iMovie HD. Since they create different file formats, the only way I've found is to export as a Quicktime movie by going to File menu > Share > Quicktime > Expert Settings > next windos, click on Options > set yours to your liking; here is a screenshot of the ones I use:


    movie settings.png


    I then drag/import the resulting file in either FCE, iMovie HD, or the new iMovie.

  • Tony Gay Level 4 Level 4 (1,625 points)

    Just did this with material supplied by a client and it worked brilliantly, in the pulldown menu File/Import/iMovie Project & iMovie event. I had to open the iMovie event/projects in iMovie first for my system to recognise them, quit out of iMovie and then into the FCPX import process.





  • Tony Gay Level 4 Level 4 (1,625 points)

    If you have been working on the iMovie event& project on your mac it is not an issue, in my case the client had done a pre-edit on their mac in iMovie, it worked a treat.


    The manual steps through how to import the project to FCPX



    Import from iMovie

    You can import any of your existing iMovie projects and your iMovie Event Library into Final Cut Pro.

    Note:  If you want to import an iMovie trailer project, you first need to convert it to a standard iMovie project. For more information, choose Help in iMovie ‘11 and search for “Convert a trailer to a project.”

    Important:  iMovie projects and clips from the iMovie Event Library are not automatically analyzed during import because they retain their original analysis results from iMovie. You can override iMovie analysis by analyzing your clips in Final Cut Pro after import. For more information, see Analyze your media.

    Import an iMovie project

    1. In Final Cut Pro, choose File > Import > iMovie Project and locate your existing iMovie project, typically found in the Movies folder on your hard disk.
    2. Click Import.


    Import your iMovie Event Library

    The project opens in the Timeline and any associated events appear in the Event Library.


    1. In Final Cut Pro, choose File > Import > iMovie Event Library.
    2. Read the message that appears and click OK.

    The events in your iMovie Event Library appear in the Final Cut Pro Event Library.

  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (22,150 points)

    I may be wrong, but I do not believe this works with the old iMovie HD 6 (which is from around 2006). A recent version of FCP may recognize a newer iMovie version, but I don't believe it'll import from the old iMovie HD. The article you linked to in fact mentions iMovie 11. Here is an excerpt from the iMovie HD 6 Manual (page 32):


    Screen Shot 2012-11-20 at 7.42.50 PM.png

    I prefer to work with iMovie HD 6 and, most likely because it does have certain limitations, I have to export it as a Quicktime movie which can then be imported into most apps.

  • Meg The Dog Level 6 Level 6 (9,395 points)

    iMovie HD is iMovie 6, which is substantially different from iMovie 11.




  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (22,150 points)

    If you cannot find a solution here, I would suggest you repost your question in the iMovie forum - you'd find very knowledgeable people there who actually still use the old iMovie version. If you'd like, I'll ask the hosts to move the thread over?


    Take a look at the post by Ian here in this thread:


  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (22,150 points)

    As long as you use the best export settings available, you should be happy with the quality since iMovie 6 does do lossless encoding/rendering/exporting.


    If you do want to have this thread moved, let me know. Otherwise, good luck with your project!

  • AppleMan1958 Level 7 Level 7 (27,335 points)

    One option to consider is to do this in two steps. First import your iMovie 6 project into iMovie 11. Then import the iMovie 11 project into FCPX. This will not lose any quality from your DV files.


    When you import iMovie 6 into iMovie 11, you will get all your clips in an iMovie 11 event. The clips that you edited into the timeline will go in an iMovie 11 project. All transitions will be replaced with simple cross dissolves. Titles, music, and photos will not transfer over. But within these limitations, it will do the job, losslessly.


    When you import the iMovie 11 project into FCPX, you will have all the Event clips and the edited Project clips.


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