Your iMovie Keeps Crashing? [Official Fix Options 2024]

Edited by Ben Jacklin
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If you feel frustrated as your iMovie won't open or keeps crashing, you are not alone. It is one of the most common issues that iMovie users face. Editing videos using iMovie might turn into a devastating job due to this. So, why isn’t iMovie working? In this article we offer some of the solutions that you can try if the app is not updating or working. You can also consider using Movavi Video Editor as alternative software.

iMovie crashes when importing

There might be several reasons behind a software crash. But fixing iMovie crashing issues on a MacBook is not that tough. You might wonder what to do when iMovie freezes when opening or in the middle of a project. Here are some probable reasons and a few solutions to the problem.

  • So, why does iMovie keep crashing? One of the most obvious reasons behind iMovie not working on a Mac is importing a corrupted file. If you do so, iMovie will surely crash. So, you can try to work with some other file. It would be better for you if you could multiple copies of your files.

  • The same problem will arise if you try to import a file whose codecs are unsupported by iMovie. Video codecs permit video files to be decompressed and compressed. So, in case the codec is unsupported when importing, you will face file codec issues.

  • Another probable reason behind iMovie crashing is the version you are using, and that might not be to run by the version of macOS that you use.

iMovie import solutions

It is common that iMovie keeps freezing while importing any file, or iMovie keeps quitting unexpectedly while getting started with a new project. Here are the most straightforward solutions to the problem.

  • It is a common thing that the file you are trying to work with is a corrupted one and won’t play. It might not be possible to use a different file all the time. To avoid this, ensure that you have various copies of the file. Redundancy in file management is excellent if you need to work with complex files. Or, you can find out and delete the corrupted files. Click on Users in the Finder window, right-click on iMovie, and you can see the package contents. Delete the files and load the right ones.

  • If the problem is a compile-time or a run-time errors, you have no choice left other than to wait for the new version of iMovie. iMovie keeps developing new bugs. So, it depends on the development of the solution team.

  • Application not responding is a common problem in iMovie. You might only require to delete some preferences on certain occasions. Activate safe mode and open iMovie. Press one of the command keys and hold the option key to delete preferences.

iMovie keeps quitting unexpectedly

For problems related to iMovie quitting unexpectedly, you can try out the following solutions.

  • Try to update the version of iMovie.

  • Activate the safe mode and log in to your computer. Try to launch iMovie.

  • A great solution is to delete the iMovie caches.

  • You can also delete the corrupted project files in iMovie.

  • Video editing in iMovie needs a vast space. Check the available storage and make sure that you have at least 10 GB of available space.

What to do when iMovie freezes

iMovie freezing is quite a normal thing as it is something that almost every iMovie user faces. Let us check out some of the standard solutions.

  • You can start by trying out the old method of restarting your computer. Then try to launch the software by holding Command and Option keys. Delete preferences from the dialog box. Most of the time, this can cure freezing glitches.

  • If you face the same problem again, launch the software by holding down the Option key. It will let you create a different library or select a different library where you can open iMovie. Select one and check if iMovie works appropriately.

  • If none of the above tips work, open iMovie from a different user account. You can create a new account or just use the Guest account.

iMovie crashes when exporting and sharing

When it comes to iMovie, some users report that iMovie crashes when exporting or sharing. Here are some of the solutions to this problem.

  • If iMovie crashes when sharing or exporting, try to restart your computer. Restarting will let macOS reload the resources that might have resulted in the glitch.

  • It is a common issue that you are using an outdated version of iMovie. So, if iMovie won’t export your file, make sure to update the app for smooth work.

  • iMovie does not permit the usage of special symbols and characters in the name of the export file. If any, check the name and remove the special characters and symbols, as iMovie won’t just export if the name is not supported.

  • Check the export settings as H.264 codec in iMovie might result in export problems. Tweak the setting and try exporting again.

  • It might be the case that iMovie is not exporting a specific project. You can check this out by exporting some other project.


iMovie is one of the common names when it comes to video editing on a Mac. But, unfortunately, some users may face problems when using this app. We hope this guide will help you if iMovie won't update or keeps crashing. These tips are mainly for the Mac version of the software but you can also try using some if iMovie is not working on your iPhone. Additionally, you can always try out other alternatives like Movavi Video Editor for a smooth workflow on your Mac.

Frequently asked questions

How do I empty my iMovie cache?

Why does the iMovie library take up so much space?

How do you clean up iMovie?

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