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5 Affordable or Free iPhone Apps for Filmmakers: Shoot, Edit, and Add Special Effects

5 Affordable or Free iPhone Apps for Filmmakers: Shoot, Edit, and Add Special Effects

Want to make a movie? There’s an app for that — or, to be more accurate, there are many, many apps to help make a movie. The good news: many of these apps are free or very affordable. The bad news? Well, it’s not really bad news per se, but there are so many apps out there that it’s hard to sort through them all and determine which ones are worth your while. We’re here to help with a handy guide to the best affordable or free iphone apps for filmmakers. The following list is by no means comprehensive and we plan to feature more of our favorite filmmaking apps soon.

Here are 5 affordable or free iPhone apps for filmmakers:

1. Spark Camera ($1.99): The big plus here is simplicity. Press and hold your finger on the screen to record clips up to 30 seconds each. Then you can select one of 10 high quality filters and add a soundtrack from your music collection on your phone. This app is great for recording video, but not so much for editing.

2. Cameo (Free): Users can shoot 720p HD videos on their phones or tablets and can then
edit and reorder films, adding title cards, soundtracks and other
professional-grade effects and fonts (provided by Cameo). You can also
collaborate in real-time with friends. Users can then share their films
on the Cameo network or via Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr. Another bonus: Cameo provides cloud storage so videos don’t take up space on your phone.

3. Reel Director ($1.99): This user-friendly iPhone app lets you splice, split and trim video clips and add titles and transitions. Then you can easily upload your video to YouTube within the app.

4. Cinefy (Free):  It’s your own FX studio right on your phone with over 100 special effects (dinosaurs!). The interface is intuitive and makes editing a breeze. Drop in your clips, add music, and apply over 100 specific effects and animations.

5. iMotion HD (Free): This time-lapse and stop-motion app for iOS lets you edit your movie and export HD 720p videos to your device or directly to YouTube.

Of course, there are many more useful apps out there for filmmakers. We’ll continue to feature our favorites. Please feel free to tell us about your favorite filmmaking apps in the comments below.

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Norman Whitelaw

Filmic Pro is a superb App for film making. I use it daily.


Together Video Camera app would be the great addition to the list. It is like Evernote for Videos. Everything is organized, synchronized and easily combined into the movie.


one of the best app that i have downloaded so far is "iTranslate – Photo To Text"
It's really magical, and a must have, because we use it daily, not like other apps we download and use one time!
Really helpful, i use it when i read newspaper, when i read French articles or foreign books, when i travel where are the signs and alerts, i don't need to write and look them in the dictionary, that's what apps should be simple and productive.

here is the link to download;

Danny H

These are all great apps, and there are so many more out there that haven’t even made this list. We are fortunate these days to have all these tools at our fingertips, it has made life on set a lot less stressful, from focus pullers to “film loaders” a job that now consists of pushing a memory chip into a camera. We now have the ability to play each take back immediately in HD, there is no more second guessing, no need to wait for the film to be processed overnight, a expensive process. I remember hearing the horror stories of exposed film, scratches, or even roll outs in the middle of a expensive stunt that was only going to be done once. Even departments like hair and make-up use their phones to keep detailed records for continuity. But I’ve got to say, as a Prop Master myself, I found 3 iOS apps put out as tools for my Prop iPhones and iPads, the apps allow my on-set team to easily create phone call simulations, back and forth fake text messaging, fake emails, completely customized social media feeds, we can control all the phone elements, from time, carrier, battery percent, incoming calls on timers. I only discovered the apps a few months ago and I don’t know how I could go back, as is probably pretty evident. Before we had to have graphics made from scratch, which not only cost a lot to design but then they would not work very well in iPhones especially. The other two apps they have are lockable chroma-keying color palette, and a menuless video player, which is great for when we use an iPad built into a set piece, I have a video made, set it to loop, have a few fullscreen options, lock the screen and put it in place. This way I don’t have to worry that the screen is touched and the UI pops up and ruins the effect, theres been a few times when afterwards when I watch that film later I spot a screen in the background with a quicktime player menu or something like that showing, bugs the heck out of me! Check them out over at -DH

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