How to Save iMovie on Your Mac

iMovie is Apple’s Proprietary video editor allowing you to create professional videos without much effort. iMovie is a popular choice for entry-level video editors allowing people to make small edits and tweak the videos. It also allows you to save and export them in formats like MOV, mp4, etc. 

However, one of the main problems with iMovie is that once you export the video file, you won’t be able to make any changes to it later. Moreover, if you’re wondering where the save button within iMovie is, you needn’t worry, as all the work gets saved automatically without physically needing to save the files.

This article guides you on how to save iMovie on Mac, along with a few more helpful tips and tricks. Keep reading to find out more. 

How to Save iMovie on Your Mac

This method is rather simple and does not take more than a couple of minutes, depending on how big the movie or video is. Refer to the instructions provided below to see how it is done.

  • Open a Finder window and click on the Applications tab from the Menu on the left-hand side. 
  • Search for iMovie and double-click on it to open it. 
  • Click on the “+” button to create a new project. 
  • You will now have the option of whether you want to create a Movie or a trailer. Choose the Movie option if you create a video from scratch with your audio and clips. On the other hand, if you need some pre-made templates, use the Trailer option. 
  • Once the project has been created, you can start working on it. 

Furthermore, you have two options on where you want to save your file, Mac’s internal storage or external storage. 

We recommend saving movies on external storage as movies usually take up a lot of space, and if you’re an avid editor, your storage is bound to get filled up very soon due to the massive sizes. 

  • To save an iMovie on an external drive, head to the Menu bar and click on the file. 
  • Click on Open library and select New
  • Give a name to this new library and set its destination to the external drive connected to your Mac.
How to Save iMovie on Your Mac
  • Now, click on Save. 

You can keep doing this for all your movies and projects on iMovie. Once you get a hold of the process, it will look much easier as the steps mentioned above.

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How to Save Finished Movie Projects on Mac?

Exporting a video is the last part of the editing process and takes place only when all of the work has been done. Refer to the instructions provided below to see how it is done.

  • Look for the iMovie file you want to export. 
  • Double-click on it to open it. 
  • Once the project has loaded, click on the Export button located around the top-right corner of the screen.
Save iMovie on Your Mac
  • Click on Export file and make any changes to the movie format, resolution, quality, or name if you want to.
Save iMovie on Your Mac
  • Click on Next and choose where you want to save the exported file. 
  • Check the file size and decide whether you want to save it inside the internal or external storage. 
  • Now, click on Export and wait until the process finishes. 

This process comes in handy when you have completed your project on the app and are looking it save it directly on the system.

Furthermore, the software even gives the option to choose the file size to make it easier to send it to other users.

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Where Are iMovie Files Saved On Mac by Default?

As mentioned above, iMovie has an autosave feature that automatically saves your work without needing to do it physically. As default, iMovie stores all your projects within a library file. If you want to access this file

  • Open a Finder window, head to the Menu bar, and click on Go.
  • Select Home from the drop-down list. 

Alternatively, you can also use the Shift-Command-H shortcut to do the same. Click on the Movies folder, and all the projects created on iMovie are saved here. 

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Why Can’t I Export My iMovies on Mac? How To Fix

Failure to export movies on iMovie is not uncommon and can usually be fixed quickly. There can be several reasons for your inability to export video using iMovie. Here are some of the possible causes for this issue.

1. Low Storage Space

This is the most common reason an export fails. You can check to see if your Mac has enough storage for the size of the file that you’re exporting.

You can also check to see any abnormalities within the project, like glitches or flashes, anything that might look out of place. In that case, you can remove and replace the corrupted clip and try again. 

2. Error

This error shows up when there’s damage to the system files causing faults in the video rendering system. You can fix this issue by uninstalling and reinstalling the iMovie application from the App Store. 

3. Slow speed

If you notice that the rendering speed is at a crawl and almost won’t progress further, it might be due to inadequate memory or too many commands given at the same time.  You can try closing out all the idle applications on your Mac to free up some memory and increase the rendering speed.

4. Internal Error

If your app constantly crashes, the reason could also be internal. Sometimes, certain software or app fails to respond due to specific bugs. Hence, ensure you have the most recent software update on your system. Or you can even check for the app update from the App Store.


That’s it for this article, folks; now you know how to save an iMovie file on your Mac and resolve other issues. We hope this article provided you with the solution you were looking for regarding iMovie. We recommend saving iMovie files on external drives instead of Mac’s internal storage to prevent the hard disk from filling up unnecessarily.

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