If you’re a video editor using Apple devices, chances are you’ve used iMovie at some point.
iMovie comes pre-installed on new Apple products and is used for editing and exporting video content.
As a creator trying to grow your audience, captioning your videos is one of the best ways to make your content more engaging and accessible.
Whether you're creating videos for social media or your website, subtitles and captions can help improve your viewers' experience and increase engagement.
In this step-by-step guide, we'll show you how to add subtitles and captions to your video project on iMovie.
So, let's dive in.
Can you Add Subtitles in iMovie?
Yes. This process is done manually, and this is how it works:
You add the individual block of text into the iMovie timeline, adjust the duration of each title slide, and customize the font style, size, and alignment of the text.
Subtitles are open captions, meaning they cannot be turned off once added.
What are open captions? They're words on a video that you can't switch off. So, if the video looks bad, the words will look bad too.
How to Add Captions in iMovie
Step 1: Open iMovie and import the video you wish to subtitle.
Step 2: Select the clip in the movie or video to which you wish to add the subtitles.
Step 3: Click the title sign on the viewer at the top.
Step 4: Choose the title you want to use for your subtitle, such as reveal lower third, lower third, or lower. The lower third is recommended as it offers the best take at an industry standard-looking subtitle.
Step 5: Double-click or drag your selection to the corresponding video clip.
Step 6: Select the text box [T] at the top of the viewer and type in the text of your subtitle.
How to Edit Subtitles in iMovie
To edit your subtitles, open your project and select the clip containing the subtitles you want to edit. Then, click the "Titles" button in the iMovie toolbar to access the text editing features.
This will highlight the subtitle, and you can modify the text, font, color, and size using the text editing tools.
You can modify the subtitle's duration and position within the video clip.
By delving into iMovie's advanced text editing features, you can access more advanced customization options for your subtitles, such as incorporating animations or text styles.
These encompass lower thirds, overlays, and various effects that will make your subtitles visually appealing and captivate your audience.
Once you’re done editing your subtitles, preview your work by playing the clip in iMovie. This step allows you to scrutinize subtitle timing and formatting for errors or issues so you can make changes before you export the video.
Once you’re happy, export your video with the edited subtitles and share it.
How to Add Subtitles in iMovie on iPhone and iPad
The steps are similar if you want to add your subtitles from an iPhone or iPad.
Step 1: Start by selecting the video you want to subtitle.
Step 2: Find and select the portion of the video clip to which you wish to add subtitles.
Step 3: The Title icon will become visible when you select the portion you wish to add subtitles. After clicking on the icon, you can decide on the style of your subtitles.
Step 4: Click “title text here” to manually add your subtitles. It’s important to remember that for subtitles or captions to be engaging and accessible, they must meet certain standards. They should contain a graphical expression of inaudible sounds, transcribe the background activity, imbibe some advanced customization for the captions, and achieve high accuracy.
Adding subtitles to videos on iMovie is not a clean-cut process, so your subtitles can be prone to errors, which can ruin the video experience for those who depend on captions to fully engage with the video.
Let’s consider an alternative way to add subtitles to videos - Submagic.
iMovie Captioning Alternative- Submagic
If you want a near-accuracy tool to add subtitles to your videos, consider Submagic.
Just like adding subtitles on iPhone or iPad, you can use Submagic to add subtitles to videos on iPhone and Android.
Submagic is an online tool with a simple interface and straightforward process for generating video captions. This time, you don’t need to enter the subtitles manually.
With a few clicks on this auto subtitle generator, you can effortlessly create captions with perfect emojis and intelligently highlighted keywords within two minutes.
It also allows you to create subtitles in over 48+ languages. You can generate Japanese subtitles, Italian captions, German subtitles, etc.
As a video content creator, Submagic makes it easy to add captions to Instagram Reels, YouTube shorts, Facebook Reels, and TikTok with just a click.
The Bottom Line on Adding Captions in iMovie
It takes time and effort to add subtitles to iMovie videos.
However, the end result is worth the effort. You can create excellent subtitles that look good in your video within iMovie, but they may not always be accurate. For short-form videos, Submagic is an excellent option.
Submagic will give you accurate captions with captivating fonts within minutes.