Insider Tips: Clean Up Premiere Pro’s Timelines Automatically

Every week, Insider asks one of our expert contributors to share a tip, tool, or technique that they use all the time and couldn’t live without. This week, Chris Salters demonstrates tools that for cleaning timelines automatically in Premiere Pro.

Cleaning timelines automatically in Premiere Pro

Timelines have a tendency to get messy, especially when you’re up against the clock.  That’s the nature of editing.  Fortunately, Premiere Pro has a few handy features for cleaning up your timelines automagically (yes, that is a real word).

The Simplify Sequence tool

With the current timeline selected, head to Sequence->Simplify Sequence.  This panel helps you clean a timeline by removing vertical gaps between clips and a host of other options, including removing all disabled clips.

The Close Gap tool

There are many reasons why you would want to remove blank gaps between clips in a sequence.  The command found under Sequence->Close Gap does just that.  It removes all gaps between clips, no matter what video or audio layer they are on.  It does not remove the gap between the start of the timeline and the first clip though.

The Delete Tracks tool

In the timeline, right-click near the layer names and select “Delete Tracks”.  This little panel has the power to blow away all of the empty tracks in your timeline in one click, but it is nuanced enough to remove only Video, Audio, or Audio Submix tracks.  For more granularity, it can also focus on specific video and audio tracks at the same time.

All of these tools are made more convenient by mapping them to individual custom keyboard hotkeys.

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Chris Salters

Chris Salters is a freelance video editor who cuts commercials and brand films. Based in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, he spends his free time cycling, woodworking, and being a Dad. Chris is fueled by coffee and rewarded by beer.

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