I've got a track in Premiere that's composed of a lot of screen shot stills and there's an audio track that narrates across all of them.

As the narrator talks, I want to illustrate what she's saying with FX from AfterEffects. For instance, when she mentions a specific region in the image, I want to animate in a highlight like so:

enter image description here

But I can't figure out how to sync the audio with the effects. If I replace the one still image with my AE comp, then I have no audio and I don't know when I need to apply the highlight.

The only other alternative I can see is to finish the entire track and then import it, audio and video, into AE and apply the effects. But then I'll have a massive AE track with hundreds of layers, each one targeting a different part of the timeline, and that seems like it will be very hard to manage.

Is there a better workflow or technique that I could use here?

1 Answer 1


Go to the in and out points of the clip and add edits (ctrl / ⌘k) to the audio track, so that the section of audio underneath the image clip you want to replace is separate (don't worry you can rejoin it later).

Now select this audio and the image clip and replace with an After Effects comp (using the right-click menu and choosing Replace with after Effects composition). The new AE comp will have the selected video and audio clips in it, so you can synch up.

If you don't want your audio to be chopped up, just alt-click the audio that comes from the AE comp and delete it, then stretch the ends of the original audio clip to cover the gap, select the match-cut edit and hit delete and the added edit will disappear.

  • 1
    This is very helpful, thanks. Giving it a try now. But how do you rejoin cut clips. I've been looking all over the net and there doesn't seem to be any way to do this (even though it seems like a very basic bit of functionality). I'm still using CS5, if that is relevant. Apr 10, 2017 at 12:33
  • 1
    Select the edit (i.e. the line that separates the two clips, as if you were trimming it), and hit delete. If it's a match-frame edit it will disappear.
    – stib
    Apr 10, 2017 at 13:11
  • 1
    In CS5, at least, this doesn't seem to work. I tried making a cut and then selecting that same spot, but it selects either the left or right sub-clip. I can't see how to select the cut itself. Apr 10, 2017 at 14:11
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    Ok, I normally have the "allow Selection Tool to choose Roll and Ripple trims without modifier key" preference selected (it's in preferences>trim), so I just place the cursor over the cut and it turns to the roll tool. Otherwise you need the roll tool to select a cut (hit n). Then you can click the cut and it will go red. I'm pretty sure that behaviour goes back to the dim darks, pre CS even.
    – stib
    Apr 11, 2017 at 1:48
  • How come premiere/after effects doesn't do this automatically if you select a clip and audio underneath it, it's perfectly intuitive that they should be linked and in the same position in the comp. I have to google this issue every time I replace a sequence in premiere because I keep forgetting your answer :P
    – nmu
    Nov 15, 2018 at 9:29

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