Importing, Arranging, and Exporting Rushes in Final Cut Pro

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Digital Video Rushes

For narrative project rushes, or ‘dailies,’ are pieces of footage from a certain period of shooting. This footage is unedited and plain, but used as a way to show certain members of the cast and crew what kind of footage is being recorded for each scene. These rushes are presented without any kind of constructive order except the order in which they are filmed. This means that to prepare them for viewing there is a special process to get them onto a format for standard viewing. Here is a basic run down on how to prepare and export rushes in Final Cut Pro.

Video Import

Before you actually export the rushes from Final Cut Pro you will have to get them into this non-linear video editing software to begin with. If you are shooting on a HD digital storage format such as a P2 card this means using Log and Transfer to get those MXF files into your Final Cut Pro Browser and Project. If you are using Standard Definition digital video then you will use Log and Capture to take the footage from your DV tapes and into your Final Cut Pro project.

Arranging Rushes in Final Cut Pro

Once you have gotten all the footage in there make sure that the clips are split up into each individual take or insert. If you use a P2 storage card and used Log and Transfer these will likely already be like this, but if you used Capture Now in the Log and Capture format for SD digital video then you will have to chop them up. To do this you will really just go through the slates and cut up clips into sub clips according to the slate listing. Then label them according to scene and take number so that you can clearly see exactly what clip is. You will look back at your shot list to double check what order each angle was taken in so that you know exactly what order to arrange them in.


Start by creating a base text card at the beginning announcing the project, the director, the scenes that were recorded, and the date for the shoot that the rushes came from. Then begin stacking the unedited clips according to the order that they were shot on the Timeline. This will create a very long sequence of raw footage, but this is the way that the rushes need to be presented.

Exporting from Final Cut Pro

Once you have a solid sequence of your rushes in your Timeline you are going to go to File and choose to export using QuickTime. This will give you a large base QuickTime file that is easily viewable from any digital location. From here you can just transfer it onto another digital storage medium where you can take it to the location for digital progression. The file size can often be fairly large, so if it is too big just open the QuickTime file into compressor and choose a codec that will maintain the base QuickTime format but will shrink it up a bit.

This post is part of the series: Professional Final Cut Pro

Here are some articles on how to use Final Cut Pro in your profession.

  1. Final Cut Pro 7 Example Certification Test
  2. Final Cut Pro for Windows - Is It Possible?
  3. Using the Final Cut Pro Serial Number
  4. Doing Rushes in Final Cut Pro
  5. Deciding If You Should Upgrade From Final Cut Express to Final Cut Pro