Project Trash—and the Disk-Space Paradox

You can get rid of a clip either by selecting it and then pressing the Delete key or by dragging it directly onto the project Trash icon (shown back in Figure 4-5). This iMovie feature is radically different than in iMovie 4 and earlier, for better and for worse.

The iMovie Trash has a lot in common with the iPhoto Trash, the Finder’s Trash, or the Windows Recycle Bin: It’s a safety net. It’s a holding tank for clips, photos, and sounds that you intend to throw out. They’re not really gone, though, until you use the File → Empty Trash command.

Just as in those other Trashes, you can open the iMovie Trash “folder,” look over and even play back the clips inside, and rescue or delete individual audio and video clips without emptying the whole Trash.

To open the Trash window, click the Trash icon or choose File → Show Trash. See Figure 5-4 for details.


If you just want to empty the whole Trash right now, without having to wait for the Trash contents window to open, press the ⌘ and Option keys as you click the Trash icon.

You should also be aware that:

  • Whenever you choose File → Empty Trash (or ⌘-Option-click the Trash can), iMovie first saves your project. (A message even appears to tell you so.) And that means that you lose your ability to undo your recent steps; the Undo command is dimmed. In fact, emptying the Trash also disables the Revert to Saved command and vaporizes whatever’s on your Clipboard. (You can still use the Revert Clip to ...

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