Tip #190: Fast Green-Screen Keys in Motion

… for Apple Motion

Tip #190: Fast Green-Screen Keys in Motion

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Four steps to better-looking keys.

Green-screen foreground goes above the background.
Apply the Keyer filter to the foreground and Soft Focus to the background.

Topic $TipTopic

The chroma-key filter, also called a “green-screen key,” in Motion and Final Cut Pro X is excellent at creating a clean key, generally without needing to touch any settings.

Here’s how.

  • Import the foreground shot that has the green background. (The smoother and brighter this background is lit, the better your key. Remember, we are replacing all the green pixels.)
  • Import the new background shot you want to use in place of the original green and place it below the green-screen shot.
  • Apply Filters > Keying > Keyer to the foreground clip.
  • Apply Filters > Blur > Soft Focus to the background clip. Adjust the Amount setting so that you create the illusion of depth-of-field in the shot.


Generally, to make a key look really believable, you’ll also need to add some color correction to the foreground. But, in terms of creating the key, these are the steps you need to know.

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