How to replace text in video?

I have a video with some japanese text in it. This is all 2D. I want to replace that text with an English translation. As an example, look at the pink text in the image below (in the center, to the right). This is a still image from the video:

I have another PNG with the translated version:

I edited the translated version in GIMP to have a transparent background. I did some googling and found out I can use motion tracking to create rotation, scale, and translation of how the original pink text moves (the camera actually zooms out and rotates a bit, which requires some tracking). I have done this already (on my main layer where the video file is).

The part I don't know how to do is take an existing area of the empty paper area (e.g. to the adjacent end of the paper from the first image, the left side of the middle) and overlay it over the untranslated pink text to cover it and effectively "erase" the text. I assume this is the way to do that. I assumed the clone stamp is the right thing for this, but it seems overkill, since the clone shouldn't change each frame. Should I instead take a screenshot, and create an image with the paper texture? I'd have to mirror it on the X axis since the paper texture has more contrast along the edges (left edge would have to become the right edge).

I'm VERY new to Hitfilm Express, I am on the latest version. I'm not familiar with many techniques. I'm also not very artistic. So if anyone can help guide me through this, it would be a great learning experience. Thanks in advance.


  • edited June 11

    If it were me I'd rotate the image so the grain was straight up/down.
    I'd then either mask a blank piece and cover the text or load it into an image editor (saving it from Hitfilm using Options/Export Frame), cut out the blank piece, save it as a new image and load it back into Hitfilm.

    There are far more competent people with Hitfilm on these forums nut it might give you something quick to try.

    <edit> I tried the mask method and it works OK taking the blank area above the writing. I had to duplicate the image twice to cover all the text. I then added the new text, linked all the images to a new point and rotated it back to normal again.

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator
    edited June 12

    Export a single frame from Hitfilm (this is in the Options drop down at the bottom right of the viewer.

    Go back into GIMP. There you can use the HEAL tool on the exported frame to create a patch. From there, export the patch from GIMP and import into Hitfilm. The heal tool, being content-aware should make this fast and easier than trying to create the patch in Hitfilm.

  • Triem's idea is perfect. I ended up using the heal tool and it worked out great! Thank you!

  • Thank you very much for your extensive answer!

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