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Alternative to Rotate a Video in iMovie

By Elsie Wesley, Friday, Jan. 13, 2017

To rotate a vertical video to horizontal format or vice versa in iPhone/iPad/MacBook/iMac, you can use iMovie. However, without iOS or macOS device, you may be looking for an alternative for iMovie in Windows PC. Therefore, today in this tutorial, we are going to cover not only the specific steps of rotating a video in iMovie, but also the introduction of useful iMovie alternative for Win/Mac to rotate video.

Section 1: Specific Steps on Rotating a Video in iMovie

iMovie 11 comes free on new iPhone, iPad, Mac devices. If you have an older device, you can download iMovie from the App Store. This tutorial is based iMovie 11 on Mac.

Step 1. Import a Video to Project Media

Launch iMovie 11/10/9/8, click "Import Media" to import the video in wrong orientation to the program. If the video has been added to the program, click "Project" and choose the video from the project.

Import Video to iMovie

Step 2. Rotate Video in 90 Degrees

Press the C key or click the Crop button and you'll see two Rotation buttons appearing on the top of the viewer. Click the Rotation buttons to rotate the video clockwise or counterclockwise in 90 degrees.

Tip: If you import video clips to "Project Media", a rotation applies to all clips, even if you select just a part of the clip to modify.

Step 3. Crop Video If Necessary

When the video is adjusted to a new orientation, for example, a vertical iPhone video is rotated horizontally, its image might not fit the iMovie's aspect ratio, and black bars might appear on one edge of the viewer. Click "Crop" to crop the video or simply click "Fit" to make the entire image to show.

Rotate Video on iMovie


  • iMovie supported video formats (importing): MPEG-4/MPEG-2, DV & HDV, AVCHD(Advanced Audio Coding), MOV (QuickTime Movie).

  • iMovie supported video formats (exporting): MOV (QuickTime Movie), AVI, Image Sequence, DV, AIC, AAC, JPEG.

There should be additional file formats that iMovie supports if you have some advanced research. But still, iMovie supports a limited amount of video formats. Format incompatibility has been a matter that concerns many iMovie users. The alternative tool that we're going to introduce below surpasses iMovie in terms of supported formats.

Section 2: Alternative for iMovie to Rotate a Video in 90/180 Degrees

FonePaw Video Converter Ultimate can be an alternative for iMovie in video rotation. Better than iMovie, the program not only supports rotating video in 90°, but also flipping video in 180°. With both Mac and Win version available, the program can rotate video in almost all frequently used formats, such as MPG, MP4, DPG, MPEG-1, MKV, MOV, FLV, SWF (learn more about supported input/output file formats of Video Converter Ultimate).

Download and install FonePaw Video Converter Ultimate on your Mac or Win computer.


Step 1. Add Videos

Start the program on your MacBook, iMac or Windows computer, and on the upper menu bar, choose "Add file" to add videos. Click the arrow download icon beside "Add file", you'll have the "Add files" and "Add folder" options.

Add Video or Video Folder

Step 2. Rotate Videos in 90 Degrees

Choose "Edit" and enter the Rotate window. There are two viewers. You can watch the original video in the "Original Preview" viewer. As you choose "Rotate 90 clockwise" or "Rotate 90 counterclockwise, the "Output Preview" viewer will show how the video looks like after rotating.

Rotate Videos in 90 Degrees

Step 3. Flip Videos in 180 Degrees

You can also select "Horizontal flip" or "Vertical flip" to rotate the video in 180° from left to right or upside down. After you have rotated the video in the suitable orientation. Click "Apply" to save rotation change to one video or click "Apply all" to save change to all videos.

Flip Video in 180 Degrees

Step 4. Convert Rotated Videos

Click "Convert" button to save the rotated videos on your computer.  

Preview and Convert Video


iMovie is fine, but if you have video that iMovie doesn't support or want to rotate the video in 180 degrees, why not try FonePaw Video Converter Ultimate to rotate the video or convert the video into iMovies supported format. Also, the program comes with features including video format converting, resolution upscaling, video deshaking, noise removing, brightness and contrast adjusting, etc. to meet other video editing needs.



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