Before we can begin making a video, we need to import files into OpenShot. Most media file types are recognized, such as videos, images, and audio files. Files can be viewed and managed in the Project Files panel.

Import Files

There are many ways to import media files into OpenShot.

Name Description
Drag and Drop Drag and drop the files from your file manager (file explorer, finder, etc...)
Right Click→Import Right click in the Project Files panel, choose Import Files...
File Menu→Import File menu→Import Files...
Import Files Toolbar Click the Import Files... toolbar button (on the top menu)

File Menu

To view the file menu, right click on a file (in the Project Files panel). Here are the actions you can use from the file menu.

Name Description
Import Files... Import files into your project
Thumbnail/Detail Toggle the view between details and thumbnails
Preview File Preview a media file
Split Clip... Split a file into many smaller clips
Edit Title Edit an existing title SVG file
Duplicate Title Make a copy, and then edit the copied title SVG file
Add to Timeline Add many files to the timeline in one step
File Properties View the properties of a file, such as frame rate, size, etc...
Remove from Project Remove a file from the project

Split Clip

If you need to cut a file into many smaller clips before editing, the Split Clip dialog is built exactly for this purpose. Right click on a file, and choose Split Clip... from the file menu. This opens the Split Clip dialog. Use this dialog to quickly cut out as many small clips as you need. The dialog stays open after you create a clip, to allow you to repeat the steps for your next clip. When you are finished, simply close the dialog.

# Name Description
1 Start of Clip Choose the starting frame of your clip by clicking this button
2 End of Clip Choose the ending frame of your clip by clicking this button
3 Name of Clip Enter an optional name
4 Create Clip Create the clip (which resets this dialog, so you can repeat these steps for each clip)

Add to Timeline

In certain cases, you might need to add many files to the timeline at the same time. For example, a photo slide show, or a large number of short video clips. The Add to Timeline dialog can automate this task for you. First, select all files you need to add, right click, and choose Add to Timeline.

# Name Description
1 Selected Files The list of selected files that need to be added to the timeline
2 Order of Files Use these buttons to reorder the list of files (move up, move down, randomize, remove)
3 Timeline Position Choose the starting position and track where these files need to be inserted on the timeline
4 Fade Options Fade in, fade out, both, or none
5 Zoom Options Zoom in, zoom out, or none
6 Transitions Choose a specific transition to use between files, random, or none


To view the properties of any imported file in your video project, right click on the file, and choose File Properties. This will launch the file properties dialog, which displays information about your media file. For certain types of images (i.e. image sequences), you can adjust the frame rate on this dialog also.

# Name Description
1 File Properties Select an image sequence in the Project Files panel, right click and choose File Properties
2 Frame Rate For image sequences, you can also adjust the frame rate of the animation