If you have video files that you want to edit in iMovie 11, you can follow the steps below to get them imported:

  • Run iMovie. From the top menu, click File -> Import -> Movies. Browse to the video file that you want to import into iMovie.

import video into iMovie

  • Choose the location where you want the output file to be saved.
  • Choose to create a new event for adding the video or add the video to an existing event..
  • Tick Optimize Video if you are importing HD videos and select Large or Full of your choices.
  • Decide what iMovie will do to the original file. Select either Copy files or Move files.

imovie video importing settings

  • Click Import.

iMovie 11 compatible video formats

iMovie can work with files such as DV, DV widescreen, HDV 1080i, HDV 720p, MPEG-4 Simple Profile, and iSight. When using videos stored in the hard drive, MP4 and MOV files are supported. However, MPG and WMV files are not. Not all AVI files are accepted either. It will depend on what codec was used in making the clip. If the same thing happens with MOV files, then the issue lies with the codecs.

MPEG-4 Simple Format is mainly supported by iMovie because of its efficiency and error resiliency. It is also the file output of choice of many network cameras, surveillance devices, and video servers. A lot of commercially available video cameras create output files in this format as well.

For the video files that are incompatible with iMovie, you can use Video Converter for Mac to get them converted before adding to iMovie for editing.