While Apple has still kept the application closed to third-party developers, it recently released iMovie ’11, which is a part of the latest iLife suite of applications. iMovie ’11 has a handful of additional features that bring back many of the missing features that made iMovie HD so great.
As far as I”˜m concerned, the number one missing feature is the return of the timeline in iMovie ’11.
When you first launch the latest version, this feature is not evident by default. You get at it by selecting a project, then clicking the swap button, which will put the Project Storyboard at the bottom of iMovie and the Event browser at the top.
Then you click the rows button to view clips in single or multiple rows.
This feature makes longer video productions a little easier to manage and edit.
Another resurrected feature is the ability to adjust audio levels right on the clip without having to open a separate editor panel. This can only be done with clips in the Event browser. To access this feature, you need to select clips and then click the auto button in the iMovie toolbar.
Apple also brought back audio effects and an equalizer. So now you can apply voice and other enhancements to audio.
Movie Trailers & Themes
One significant tool I can’t wait to use with my next project is the Movie Trailer feature, which allows you to select clips from a project to create a really professional looking trailer. While it’s a template-based tool, allowing for very little customization, it’s a great way to share parts of your movie in a fast-paced short clip. In addition, a few other themes are included for making news and sports productions.
The process involved in building movie trailers is to include individual clips with one person or a group of people in them. The new iMovie helps streamline that process with what is called People Detection. This not like the Face Detection feature found in iPhoto. It doesn’t try to find individual unique faces, it simply tracks and tags clips of how many faces are detected in clips, and the distance they are from the camera.
It’s takes a while for iMovie to analyze clips for this detection, so be prepared to take a coffee break while you wait. After you click the filter search button, you can view tagged clips by one person, two people, or a group; as well as of people in closeup, medium, or wide shots.
Apple also added options for where you can quickly share your iMovie projects. In addition to YouTube, you can now directly upload to projects to Vimeo.com, CNN iReport, and Facebook. If you have a Mac Os X Server, iMovie includes a feature for creating and publishing podcasts to what is called Podcast Producer.
It’s great to see iMovie evolve and start to become a powerful video editor for beginning and advanced users.
Let us know what features you like, or what you still find lacking in the program. Also check out my other article on how to add opening and closing credits to your project in iMovie.