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Editing clips together in iMovie is a simple matter of selecting the portion of the clips you want and dragging them into your project. This incredibly easy method of editing was introduced in iMovie '08, and worked exactly the same in iMovie '09, but iMovie '09 also brings a ton of new options that become available when you drag clips on top of other clips. In this iMovie project, I'm editing together some nature footage shot in Aspen, Colorado. And again, the most basic way of editing clips together is to make selections from your Events and drag them into your project, and I'll just call this one Aspen. I'll leave the Aspect Ratio at 69, and the Theme at None., Okay so there is my first clip and let me just grab some more footage here.
I'll just grab this entire clip here, drag that in, and I'll just continue dragging clips in to build my movie. Now let's say I have changed my mind. Instead of opening with a shot of leaves, I want to use this footage of the clouds moving slowly over the mountains. So I'm going to make a selection there, and drag that over the clip of leaves. Now when you do this in iMovie '09, you get this popup containing these options that you can select from. I can choose to replace this entire clip with the one I'm dragging in, so you can see now I've replaced that shorter clip of leaves with this longer clip of the mountains, and that's increased the overall length of my movie, so that's pretty easy. Let me undo that so I can show you some of the other options.
Let's make another selection here. Now instead of replacing the clip when I drag over, I can also choose to insert the clip that I'm dragging in. Which means that instead of replacing this clip of the leaves, my movie will cut to the footage of the mountains at the point where the playhead is currently at. So I'll choose Insert. So you can see I see couple of seconds of the leaves, then it will cut to the mountains and when that footage is done, it will come back to the remainder of the leaves footage. So that's the Insert command. Let's undo that. And you probably already saw that the last option currently available is for importing just the audio from the clip I'm dragging in.
Let me grab this footage of the river here. And let's drag that on top of the clip of the leaves again and this time I'll choose Audio Only. So you can see that just adds this audio track down below the clip, just drag that over a bit, and I can adjust the end to snap to the length of the clip. Now let's play that back. (Sound of rushing water.) So I now have created the illusion that this footage was shot near a river. Delete that and you can hear what it sounds like without the audio from the river added.
(Sound of wind rustling through leaves.) So this is some of the options you have available when you drag clips on top of other clips in your project, but in reality that's only scratching the surface of the options that are available when you drag a selection of a clip into your project. Now, in an effort to keep things as simple as possible, these other options aren't visible by default, but if you are pretty comfortable editing in iMovie, you'd probably want to turn them on so you have all the available tools at your disposal. To do so, go to iMovie > Preferences, just move this out of the way so you can see what happens. Under the General category check Show Advanced Tools and right away you can see that this add some additional items to the toolbar, but what I want to show you here is how this effects drag and drop editing.
Let me close Preferences. So I have got about 30 seconds of footage of these yellow and green leaves on the mountainside here. Let select 90 seconds of this mountain footage, just drag down a little further here. Now when I drag this selection on top of the clip in my project, I get several more options to choose from. At the top of the menu I not have only have Replace, but I have Replace from Start, Replace from End, and Replace at Playhead. Replace from Start and Replace from End are extremely useful because they let you replace the existing clip in your project with a new footage while keeping the clip at the same length. So even though I'm dragging in about 90 seconds of footage over a 30 second clip, if I choose Replace from Start, you can see that the clip in my project has stayed the exact same length, and if you look down at my Events Browser, you could see the orange bar here representing the amount of footage that I'm using, only spans from the beginning of the clip to about this point even though I had selected a lot more footage than that.
So this is especially useful when you're replacing a clip in the middle of a project, and you don't want to end up shifting the clips that follow it forwards or backwards. Let's undo that and select about 90 seconds of footage again. I'll drag that clip to my project again on top of this other clip and this time I'm going to choose Replace from End. Again, the overall clip length stays the same, but notice this time I'm using footage from the end of my selection. So you notice the orange bar here shows me that I'm using footage from the end of my selection. So in situations where you want to make sure your clips ends at a specific spot, you want to choose Replace from End and iMovie will automatically calculate the amount of footage it needs to grab to keep the clip to same length as the original, but to also make sure that the clip ends exactly where you want.
So we'll do that one more time. Now the third option is Replace at Playhead, which places the start of your selection exactly where the playhead is when you drop your clip. It also grabs the footage prior to the start of your selection point to fill in the space leading up to that point. So if I grab some mountain footage again-- and notice here where the start of my selection is. I'm going to click and drag that up on top of the clip to right about there, you can see where the playhead is on the clip right there and I'm going to choose Replace at Playhead.
Notice that iMovie grabs the stuff before my selection to fill in the space so that my selection would still start exactly where I wanted it to, but it had to grab the stuff before then to fill in the point before the playhead. Now there are several more options available when you have iMovie's Advanced Tools turned on. I'll be going over some more of them in the later movies, but I do want to show you one more while we are here. Let's drag this river footage into our project and let's select about say 5 seconds of these yellow leaves blowing in the wind and I'll drag that on top of my river footage.
Now you have already seen the Insert option, which basically cuts away from one clip to another and when that footage has played in its entirely, we cut back to the first clip at the point where we left off. With Advanced Tools turned on, we also have the Cutaway option available. This is kind of similar to Insert, but this option lets you cut to a second clip while the audio from the first clip keeps playing in the background. So I'm going to choose Cutaway and you can see what that looks like there, and let me go ahead and play that for you. (Sound of water rushing.) So instead of chopping up the river footage it continues to play in real-time while we cutaway to other footage, and when that other footage is over, we cut back to the river footage.
Cutaways can be useful if you are shooting say an interview with someone who is maybe reminiscing about his hometown, and while he is talking you could use the Cutaway option to show shots of his hometown while continuing to listen to him speak. Cutaways can make things much more visually interesting. Okay, so this is some of the new drag and drop options available to you in iMovie '09. We'll look at some of the other options in a little bit, but for now just be aware that you have to turn on Advanced Tools in Preferences in order to see all of these options.
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