FCP X: Importing iMovie Projects

With the recent release of FCP X 10.0.3, a lot has been written about the ability to – at last – move Final Cut Pro 7 projects to FCP X. However, there’s another segment of videographers that can also easily migrate to the power of Final Cut Pro X: iMovie users. Let me show you how to move iMovie Events and Projects into FCP X.

Unlike all past versions of Final Cut Pro, the latest – FCP X – makes it easy to import an iMovie Project or just the media from all your iMovie Events.


An Event is Apple’s name for a collection of media. Most often, this media collection comes from a single activity – a performance, for instance. However, an Event can contain any collection media.

Importing the Event folder from iMovie into FCP X adds ALL the Event media from all your iMovie projects as separate Events in the Event Library of Final Cut Pro X.

The only requirement is that the media needs to be imported into iMovie first.

Here, for instance, I have two iMovie events. Since all Events are stored in the same iMovie Events folder, when I import these into FCP X, all the media from all the Events will transfer.

To import the iMovie Events Folder into FCP X, select File > Import > iMovie Events folder.

FCP X is smart enough to know what it has already imported and, if you’ve already imported media, Final Cut will only import the media that’s new.

After you click OK your iMovie media is imported into FCP X, where each iMovie Event creates its own Event in Final Cut.

This is a very easy way to bring ALL your iMovie media into FCP X.


However, you may not want to import all your iMovie media – perhaps you just want to bring in one project.

That, too, is simple.

Select File > Import > iMovie Project.

Final Cut immediately displays all your iMovie projects; these are stored in Movies > iMovies Projects inside your Home directory.

Select the project you want to import and both the Project file and all its media are imported into Final Cut, ready for you to edit.

Simple and fast.


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58 Responses to FCP X: Importing iMovie Projects

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  1. DebG. says:


    I foolishly waited until now to upgrade my old iMovie ’11 projects and events to FCP 10.1.3

    I had to first upgrade to iMovie 10 which doesn’t allow for keywords any longer.

    I’d really like to import my old iMovie EVENTS, with the keywords intact, to FCP 10.1.3 I experimented by sending one iMovie Project to FCPX and it does not show the original media in the FCPX Event even though when I checked the Library bundle by Show Package Contents all the media associated with that iMovie Project is there.

    Also, how do I import all the old iMovie Events that I never used in a project to FCPX AND keep the keywords?

    I know… I know… I should have imported all my old iMovie stuff back in FCP 10.0.9…

    Any help?

    • LarryJ says:

      Deb G:

      Hmm… I’m not a lot of help here, as I don’t use iMovie enough to be an expert.

      My best suggestion is to call Apple Support and see what they say. Or, perhaps, another reader with more iMovie experience can help.


  2. David Abbott says:

    Sorry Larry this is not the right thread to post this, but just trying to see if anyone else is seeing this. I posted in Apples FCPX support community as well. I just updated to Yosemite:

    FCPX starts up,but it won’t load any libraries. If I click on the bundles directly, some will open, I can play the project, but the media does not load, others will not open at all, just spinning beach ball, have to force quit! Anyone else seeing this? I’m running latest of everything. Thank goodness I did a SuperDuper backup last night so I can use my clone.

    • LarryJ says:


      I long ago learned never to upgrade any editing system immediately after a new OS releases. I generally wait about three months to allow bugs to be found – such as you reported – and fixes to be made. Not just by Apple, but by all the third parties that we need for our editing systems to work properly.

      Here’s an article I wrote about this a while ago:


      In the meantime, I don’t have any suggestions for this problem – but expect that Apple will have patches in the near future to correct this.


  3. Tony Young says:

    Just downloaded FCPX. To import from iMovie project & iMovie Event Library doo not appear.

    • Larry says:


      The export workflow changed. You now create FCP X Libraries from within the latest version of iMovie. Then, open them like any other file in FCP X.


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