I am totally new to this video stuff. What I want is to make a short amateur movie and make some visual special effects and maybe edit it. So I'd love to find some program I could play with and do some nice things.

I found this question . But answers there still look a little bit confusing to me.

So what software is used in Hollywood for special effects and video editing? I've downloaded and installed adobe after effects but my feelings tell me that something is just not right with it and it can't be used in Hollywood films production.

UPD: I found this reddit question so they say that The Foundry's Nuke is the most widespread software for special effects. I guess this is its official website.

  • Why downvote???? Jan 3 '16 at 13:33
  • related: video.stackexchange.com/questions/14973/…
    – p2or
    Jan 6 '16 at 11:56
  • Your question is being downvoted because it is too broad. When you say you want to "make some visual special effects" what do you mean? There are so many visual special effects and so many different programs to produce them that there's no way anyone can answer with any sort of completeness. BTW "your feelings" about AE are way off, it is used all the time in film production.
    – stib
    Jan 22 '16 at 1:17

For video editing the Hollywood standard is AVID, however smaller production houses and indie filmmakers tend to use Adobe Premiere. The nice thing about Premiere, in your case, is that it dynamic links with After Effects where you can do motion graphics, composting and basic visual effects such as green screen removal among other things. To explain these keywords would be outside the scope of this website, but dynamic link basically means you can seamlessly go from your edit to your vfx without rendering intermediates.

Nuke is difficult to learn, and requires you to have a foundation in visual effects. Nuke is not an NLE, so it only does visual effects. The benefit of using it is due to its collaborative nature as well as node-based non-destructive structure.

This all probably sounds like garble to a starter, so I would suggest starting to learn Adobe's creative software, and follow some tutorials from http://www.videocopilot.net/.


Editing and Visual Effects (Special Effects aren't done in a computer) are two very different disciplines. Its possible to edit in a VFX package, but your best bet is two different pieces of software. As for "what software is used for hollywood VFX", the answer is that Nuke, After Effects and Fusion all have hollywood credits to their name. You can get a huge amount done in each of them, but since Fusion is free, you can start with that.

Now, that being said, none of those packages can really pull off all types Hollywood VFX since they only handle one part of the process. Another big part is CGI, for which you will need yet another application, as well as a ton of time an experience. Blender is a safe bet. Infact it can do pretty much everything you need, as this short film was created nearly entirely with it.

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