There are a lot of ins and outs to Final Cut that can make your life easier! Duplicating a clip is definitely one of those things. It is essential to your workflow to know how to do this so you can have the best project possible.

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How To Duplicate a Clip in Final Cut Pro X

Step 1: Select Your Clip

Duplicate a Clip in Final Cut Pro - Step 1

Select the clip you want to duplicate by clicking on it.

Step 2: Duplicate Your Clip (2 Ways)

Duplicate a Clip in Final Cut Pro - Step 2

Hold Option for Mac (or Alt on PC), and while holding the button, drag your clip either above or next to your existing clip. This will automatically duplicate it.

Duplicate a Clip in Final Cut Pro - Step 2 (Option 2)

Another option is to hit command-c and command-v to copy and paste for Mac. Or simply right-click, copy and paste on a PC. This will duplicate your clip right next to your original.

Duplicate Projects in Final Cut Pro - 1

Another option is to right-click on the project you want to duplicate and click “duplicate as”; then, you will automatically be able to rename it.

Duplicate Projects in Final Cut Pro - 2

If you use the command-D option, the project will automatically duplicate and be renamed, so you would have to right-click and rename it if you wanted to do that.

Why Would You Duplicate A Clip In Final Cut Pro?

There are many reasons why duplicating a clip could be helpful to you, so let’s go in-depth with a couple of them.

1: Color Grade

Lots of times, we simply can’t decide on pieces of our project. One of my downfalls is color grade. I always want to try out different looks to see which one fits the project best. This is where duplicating a clip comes in handy. I can duplicate as much as I want and keep the one clip that I prefer.

Pro Tip: Duplicate your clips at the end of your timeline, so you don’t get confused. 

2: VFX

This is a dual reason right next to exporting a frame in Final Cut Pro. If someone in another post department needs a clip for VFX (Visual Effects) you can simply duplicate your whole clip, so you don’t have to remove it from the timeline and then export it. Having the ability to duplicate clips can give you simple ways of trying out new things. Filmmaking is a play place of infinite possibilities, so this tool is really helpful.

3: Flashbacks, Loop Films, or Duplicating Clips for Emphasis

Flashbacks are a huge part of the film industry. It is an incredible story-telling tool that can link storylines together to make following the story easier for the audience. Looping films, such as Palm Springs, uses the same establishing shot that changes per character to show the audience that we are in the same time and place as previously established.

Duplicate a Clip in Final Cut Pro - 1

When Sarah and Nyles go to sleep, the establishing shot of their eyes shows us that we are repeating the same day. Establishing shots that match can make that timeline a lot easier for audiences to understand the story. Be sure to check out Ashleigh’s article on establishing shots and how they are used!

In this article, I will be using an example from our award-winning film, Legacy. This film is about a Filipino immigrant who fulfills his dreams of coming to America, vacationing yearly in Los Angeles with his daughter. Through the years, his videotape entries into a diary provide insight into their relationship and the test of time. If you want to check it out, we would love to have you on our youtube! Feel free to have a watch below.


Can You Duplicate Projects in Final Cut Pro?

Yes, you can! The keyboard shortcut is command-D on Mac or the Windows key-d on PC. The new project will show in your project window, and you can rename it as you’d like.

And That’s How You Duplicate a Clip in Final Cut Pro

Duplicating a clip is as easy as it gets. But just because it’s easy doesn’t mean it’s not a powerhouse tool. This can get you great edits while minimizing your workflow with the click of a few buttons.

More Final Cut Pro How To’s

If you are looking for some additional resources on Final Cut Pro, have a look at these.

I hope you enjoyed this article on how to duplicate a clip and happy filmmaking!

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Director: Ashleigh Coffelt

Date Created: 2020-08-31 11:00

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