Recipes for your Digital Media Kitchen

iMovie, Video, YouTube

Green Screen Effect in iMovie


1 – Computer (Mac)

1 – iMovie Software

1 – clip of green screen footage

1 – background image or background video


NOTE You should have already imported a background image and the green screen footage before following this tutorial. If you need help, we have instructions on how to import video into iMovie

  1. Open iMovie.
  2. Drag the still image background from the event are onto the timeline.
  3. If the image has a zoom or other similar effect, click on the Adjust button, and select the Fit button if the image is already in the right aspect ratio, or Crop to Fill to resize it to fill the background.
  4. Drag the green screen footage into the timeline, and align it on top of the background image. Drag the length of the still image to match the length of the green screen footage.
  5. Select the green screen footage and return to the adjustment panel.
  6. Where the video overlay setting displays Cutaway, use the dropdown menu and select Green/Blue Screen.


  1. Peter Stetler

    Thanks Andy for your tutorial on Imovie greenscreen!!

    I have imovie 11, on a macbook pro. I’ve created title art in photoshop- type
    with a free-form black background following the contours of type, in order
    to isolate the type from any background behind the title art. In this image,
    I have made all the background behind the type-black contour shape greensceen green.
    Question: can I use the greenscreen effect in imovie 11 using a still, as I described it above?
    if so, what do I save the title file as, to import it into imovie? I’ve tried everything that I could think of, with no success. I want the title art to show the movie running behind it,
    depending on the greenscreen mask to allow background moving behind the type, etc.

    Thanks for your good work!!


  2. Comment by post author

    Andy Rush

    Peter, your green screen “footage” can be a still image like you describe. Anywhere that the image is green, the video in the background will show through (after you apply the green/blue screen effect). A PNG file works as should a JPG image.

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