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Best Way to Reverse Clips in Premiere Pro

October 13, 2020

Not only is it super simple to reverse your clips in Premiere Pro, there's also a number of easy effects that you can achieve with this simple motion.

In today's post, you'll learn the quickest and easiest way to reverse the speed of your footage in Premiere Pro, plus a few practical applications for how you may want to style your footage using this effect.

1 | Quick and Easy Method for Beginners

Here is the most simple and basic way to reverse your clips if you are a beginner.

  • With your desired clip selected, right click and select Speed/Duration
  • When the next window pops open, select Reverse Speed
  • You can also control the speed of your clip at this point if you'd like to speed up or slow down the clip.
  • Hit OK and that's it! Your clip will now play in reverse speed.

2 | How To Add Motion and Style to Your Clips Using Reverse Speed

Now that we've got the very basics down, let's explore some ways to use reverse speed to add more style to your videos.

  • Go ahead and trim your clip to the desired in and out points.

Hint: it's always a good idea to end at the climax of whatever motion is happening on screen. The height of a jump, an extended leg while walking, or the edge of a wheel about to go off screen, for example.

  • Now copy and paste a second version of your clip right next to the first.
  • Reverse the speed only on this second clip.
  • You should now have a simple, but styled motion affect.
Simple reverse clip effect in Premiere Pro

3 | Combine Reverse Speed with Speed Ramp for Smooth Motion

This last series of steps are slightly more advanced, but will add the smoothest motion to your clips, giving you that extra bit of finesse that will look really nice.

  • Once again, trim your clip to the desired in and out points, ending exactly where you'd like the motion to reverse.
  • Right-click on your clip and select Show Clip Keyframes -> Time Remapping -> Speed
  • This allows you to create keyframes for speed, so you can have full control of when the motion speeds up or slows down.
  • Hold down Command and click your mouse to create a new speed keyframe.
  • Now on either side of your keyframe you can drag the speed layer either up or down to change the speed of the clip.
  • Drag up to increase the speed or down to slow the speed.
Create Speed Keyframes in Premiere Pro
  • Drag the keyframes to the left and right to smooth out the speed transition.
Drag speed keyframes to smooth motion
  • Once the transition fits your preference, simply copy and paste the clip and reverse the speed as we demonstrated in step one.
  • You now how a smoother, more styled speed effect on your clips!
Styled reverse clip effect using speed ramp

Concluding Thoughts

I hope you've enjoyed three relatively quick and easy ways to utilize the reverse clip effect in Premiere Pro. As you can see it can be used in numerous applications to add that extra bit of style to your films.

Thanks as always for following along. Please leave me any thoughts or questions in the comment section below.

Happy Editing!


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How to Reverse Clips in Premiere Pro

Hi, I'm Beth.

I started Handcraft Films to give other filmmakers and photographers the gift of documenting their own stories for years to come. I hope you'll learn something new and share your creativity here.
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