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How to Make Your Footage Look Cinematic Fast in Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Learn how to make your footage look cinematic fast in Adobe Premiere Pro CC.

There are many things one can do to make their footage look cinematic. Some of the most important aspects come from the way you manipulate the colors. Different color palettes can bring different moods to your piece. Getting all of your footage into the same mood is a great way to increase the overall cohesion of your piece, and make it feel more professional. Today I am going to go over some tips on how to make your footage look cinematic fast in Adobe Premiere Pro CC.

How to Make Your Footage Look Cinematic Fast in Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Create a Punchy Look

  1. This is covered in the video starting at 1:40 onward.
  2. Drag your footage onto the timeline.
  3. Go to effects and drag Lumetri color onto your footage.
  4. Go to the exposure and drop it down just a small bit. Between 0.1 and 0.3.
  5. Go to the shadows and bring them down a bit as well. Do this to the blacks as well.
  6. Look at your temperature. Move it a little bit towards the blue to give it a blue tint.
  7. Now your footage should have a punchy cold look. Manipulate the above settings until it fits the style you are looking for.

Add Fake Cinematic Bars Fast

  1. This begins at 4:35 in the video.
  2. Go to file->new->adjustment layer.
  3. Click through the dialog.
  4. Take the adjustment layer and put it onto your timeline, above your footage.
  5. Now go to effects and search for “crop”
  6. Take this effect and drag it onto your adjustment layer.
  7. Go up to the effect controls, down to the crop effect, and change the top value to 12%, and the bottom value to 12%.
  8. You now have fake cinematic bars on your footage

Correct For Warmth

  1. This begins at 9:27 in the video.
  2. Add your footage into the timeline.
  3. Go to effects, search for Lumetri color, and drag it on to your footage.
  4. In Lumetri colors, go to the temperature and drag it slightly to the orange side.
  5. Go to the exposure and bring it up just a bit.
  6. Bring the shadows up just a bit.
  7. This should give it a healthier warm look to it.

Using Sound to Tell Your Story

This begins at 10:35 in the video. Sound is very important in your clip. Don’t think because you didn’t record the sound initially that it shouldn’t be in your clip. Think of a forest. If you put in natural sounds of the forest, you get a very relaxing peaceful shot. However, if you instead swap that for the sounds of crows, distant howls, and a single gunshot in the distance, you have changed the mood. Now the forest seems scary. Match this with a darker color palette and the cinematic bars, and you have a great cinematic shot!


There you have it, some tips to make your footage look and feel more cinematic fast. Getting your footage to cinematic level isn’t hard. It just take a bit of color adjustment, and matching sound + music. Once you have adjusted colors a few times, it will start to feel natural. You will start to get an eye for it, and be able to see what needs to be done to each clip!

If you have any questions, feel free to leave them below!



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