Modular projects & templates

This is now a suggestion/request for a feature, but if anyone does know of a way to achieve this already, I’m all ears :slight_smile:

Hi Shotcutters.

What I’m about to ask may have a blindingly obvious answer that I’m just missing, so be gentle with me if I’m just being a dunce…You know how easy it is to copy & paste text, images or hyperlinks from just about anywhere into a document, then edit them afterwards?

I’m currently working on an ongoing series of short YouTube videos all on the same topic. They will all follow the same format and be of similar length and include 5 distinct sections in each. I am currently doing each one in sections and stitching the exported videos together later, but this method is imperfect and leads to unwanted compromises, or in the case of a couple of the sections, I have to do them from scratch each time.

I know it’s possible to load mlt as a clip, but is there any way of loading mlt as mlt on top of an existing clip? In essence - can I join together two or more mlt projects to make one, fully editable whole?

For example - say I’ve completed a video and I want to add on a closing sequence - you know the “like & subscribe” bit - but I want to use the same format as a previous video but in tandem with the backgrounds, voiceover and on-screen text of the current video. To have the same animations for the buttons loaded, but be able to tweak them to fit in better with the different background and text I would like to be able to just load a pre-prepared mlt template to append to the existing work so it would remain completely editable but would preserve the essential features with little or no change. Is this possible right now, or if not, is it something that is workable as a future feature?

I have already come up with workarounds involving chroma-key, masks, custom filter presets and the like that get me some way to achieving this goal, but nothing would make the workflow of modular projects like this easier (for me), than being able to load/splice sections of pre-prepared, editable, multi track video together.

I have done the usual googling and searched this fine forum, and whilst I have seen the question asked before, the closest answer to what I’m asking has been “load mlt as clip”. I’m hoping I’ve been missing something which is hiding in plain sight and someone will say “It’s easy, you just do this!”, but if not, could this be looked at as a possible future functionality of my favourite NLE?

I can see this possible if you edit the mlt file itself with like Notepad ++. Making comment tags for easy find/replace function. Not sure how this would work, as you would need to know which code to swap/add/change.

I love the idea of what you want to accomplish though, and I think it may solve a lot of support issues with people editing the same mlt files over and over again.

1 Like

I am probably missing something but how is what you are asking different from simply loading the mlt as a clip? You say in your example that you want to add on a “like & subscribe” clip that was used previously. So why not make a mlt file that is just of the “like & subscribe” clip and nothing else that can be reused in other videos?

That’s what I’m doing now, and it doesn’t provide the facility I’d like of having it fully editable. If you load mlt as a clip then it loads as if it was a completed video clip. I can’t change the background by loading a different clip below. I can’t tweak the position of the like, subscribe or bell icons to better fit with the background, I can’t place text or images UNDER the existing video without jumping through hoops. I can achieve some of that with chroma-key but it’s far from perfect.
The videos I produce are very complex with multiple layers. This current ongoing project uses 5 audio tracks and 11 video tracks. There’s plenty going on onscreen at any given time. Whilst there is a format, I can’t use the same background footage twice, so having the facility to splice mlt files together as templates for different sections would make it easier for me to conform to the format whilst still having the flexibility to make each “episode” visually and aurally different.
I am trying to produce high quality, animation intensive content for YouTube on a par with channels like Film Theory/Game Theory or Wisecrack and I can do it with Shotcut as it now stands, but a facility such as I described above would make it much quicker and easier.
I hope that answers your question.

Since there doesn’t seem to be any feedback along the lines of
“I know how to do this!”
I’ve changed this to a suggestion instead of a request for help.