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iMovie Explosion Effect

How To Make an Explosion Effect in iMovie:

imovie explosion effect

Whether big or small it seems that everybody loves watching explosions. Why is that? I don’t think that there’s any specific reason except for the fact that they add an extra level of excitement to a movie. That being said, is it possible to make some kind of an explosion effect in a program as simple as iMovie? You might not believe me, but let me tell you how you can make an iMovie explosion effect.

Although you can’t make the explosion itself in iMovie, here’s what you can do. If you have any type of pre-keyed explosion footage, you can make this effect in iMovie. You can find this pre-keyed or no background explosion footage online, in other editing software, or you can even shoot some yourself. As long as you have the footage, making the effect is actually pretty easy.

This tutorial video will explain how to make an iMovie explosion effect:

iMovie Explosion Effect Video

Now that you’ve seen this tutorial video, you know that you will be able to create this explosion effect yourself. There are all kinds of different explosions with or without smoke that you can use. If you want to just use an explosion and not add smoke, do it. If you want to add different kinds of explosions that go off one after another, do it. The point is to try and see how many different kinds of explosions you can come up with.

Here are the steps to remember when making this explosion effect in iMovie:

  1. Find any kind of pre-keyed explosion and smoke footage that you can find.
  2. When you import the footage, make sure that optimize video is not selected in the import window.
  3. Drag and drop your explosion footage on top of your video clip in your project timeline and select picture in picture.
  4. Re-size your explosion and move it where you want it to be on your video clip.
  5. Add any kind of dissolve, color correction, or any other edits that you want to make your effect look the best it can.

Just like that you have successfully created the iMovie explosion effect. As you continue practicing, you’ll be surprised at what you will be able to do.

7 comments on “iMovie Explosion Effect

  1. I have version 10.0.5 of imovie. When I import a pre-keyed explosion I never get the option to click optimize. In fact nothing pops up.. it just imports. And when I click and drag the explosion to be layered on my clip..a box comes up and says -Replace -Replace from start -Replace from end -Insert -Cancel

    What do I do? Help.


  2. Yoshi1u2 on said:

    Ive had similar problems. When adding 2 or three muzzle flashes and explosions, iMovie like lags and freezes the picture until the effects are gone. Now is this iMovie working slow or my computer.

    • theimovieguytheimovieguy on said:


      It could be one of the two or even both. Most of the time it is the computer however just not working fast enough with iMovie. If you were to export your video after adding the flashes and explosions, you will see that it will play back just fine as a quicktime video.

      The iMovie Guy

  3. leo lee on said:

    I added muzzle flash
    And gun sound
    But sometimes the muzzle flash doesnt start from the beginning
    And that happens only when i add the gun sound to the same clip.

    • theimovieguytheimovieguy on said:

      Hey Leo,

      When you say it doesn’t start from the beginning are you saying that the gun sound happens before the muzzle flash? Are you adding the gun sound as a background audio track or a clip audio track? I”m just trying to get some more information so that I can further help you.


      The iMovie Guy

      • leo lee on said:

        ok thx for replying.
        but no im adding the gun shot as a sound clip on my video. and also adding the blood clip too. it works fine without the sound. but just when i add the gun shot the blood doesnt play from the beginning. sometimes it doesnt play at all.

        • theimovieguytheimovieguy on said:

          Hey Leo,

          Try adding the gun shot as a background audio track. That might help it work correctly. Do you know how to do that?

          The iMovie Guy

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