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10 FREE Film Grains for Video Editors

Caleb Ward

Need some cool, FREE resources for your next project? Give your videos an organic “film” look with these free film grains.

Since the birth of the DSLR revolution, filmmakers have been adding grain to their digital video in order to give it an organic film look and less like a digital image.

It’s surprisingly hard to find free grain downloads, so we’ve scoured the net and created a collection of the best free grain we could find.

According to their respective sites, all of the grains featured in this list are 100% clear for your own use in commercial or personal projects.

Please share any additional free film grain resources on our social media platforms if you know of any.

1. Shutterstock

Our own Shutterstock Tutorials released 5 FREE film grain overlays for anybody wanting to add texture and warmth to their video. The best part about this pack being they were all captured with actual film cameras using real film stock.

The process of adding them to your footage is throwing them over the footage and changing the blend mode to overlay.

Here’s a tutorial breaking down the simple process:

2. HolyGrain

Screenshot of HolyGrain's website banner with a person riding a horse
Try out HolyGrain’s free film grains. Image via HolyGrain.

HolyGrain has free film grain that you can use on any project without citation. Unfortunately, the overlay is only about five seconds long. If you want to use the free HolyGrain for an extended time, you’ll need to loop it.

HolyGrain offers a selection of single pack grains from cinematic 35mm, to indie 16mm and vintage 8mm. They also provide a film dust and scratches pack!

If the free grain has whetted your appetite, you can acquire the individual packs starting at $29 for a single pack or $49 for all four of their packs at 1080p. Or, if you want a 4K version of the 35mm film grain (1080p version included, too), that will set you back $79.

3. Grainzilla

Screenshot of Grainzilla's 4K film grain pack
Grainzilla is a good, budget-friendly option. Image via Grainzilla.

Grainzilla also offers a 35mm Digital Grain and a VHS Bad Noise Pack completely free of charge.

Grainzilla not only provides a range of different packs—such as vintage film, 1080p grain, and 4K grain—but also offers a full bundle for only $60!

Grainzilla is a well-designed filmmaking site that features a few variations of film grain outside of simply black and white. They now even offer LUTs, which is new to their site.

4. PixelTools

Screenshot of PixelTools film grain collection
PixelTools: Free? YES! 4K? YES! Image via PixelTools.

Here are four free 4K clips of film grain from PixelTools. Free? YES! 4K? YES! The caveat is that you do have to subscribe to their newsletter to get the download link, but I don’t think that’s bad for some high-quality film grain!

Not the most robust and wide-variety of grain, but it’s free and perfect for any project.

5. VisionColor

Screenshot of VisionColor's website home page
This free pack includes film burns and light leaks. Image via VisionColor.

VisionColor offers a 2K natural 35mm film grain from Kodak 5219 stock for free to anyone who wants it. The only stipulation is that you have to download it via the color.io app store.

The free pack comes with grain from 35mm and 16mm film. The collection also includes some film burns and light leaks for your compositing needs.

6. FilmLooks

Filmlooks home page with a woman in a bikini top
Need to add a little grunge to your project? FilmLooks has you covered. Image via FilmLooks.

If you’re looking for cheap film grain, then FilmLooks is where you’ll find it. FilmLooks has a wide variety of plates, from scratched film to grunge.

Instead of giving away 35mm film for free, FilmLooks gives away 8mm film overlays instead. You can also find some other cool freebies here, as well.

They offer a superb wide selection of film grains and have some excellent examples on their site to show you what can be achieved with their packages.

7. Resolver Tools

Resolver Tools logo
Easily loop these film grains from Resolver Tools. Image via Resolver Tools.

Resolver Tools has three different sets of film grain packs for your projects. All of them are at 4K in 29.97 ProRes.

They’re only ten seconds long—which is a shame—but can be looped easily.

8. Austinmakesfilms

Austin Newman on the right with a grainy picture of a woman on the left
Get the 8mm Film Grain Overlay completely free now! Image via Austinmakesfilms.

We love to see what creators of online cinematography content can bring to the space. Austin Newman has done just that with a bunch of different asset packs, including LUTS, cinematic titles, film grains, and more.

You can get the 8mm Film Grain Overlay completely free right now. He also offers a strong variety of different film grains from 8mm to 16mm in his store for around $30.

9. VFX Footage

Screenshot of VFX Footage free film grain options
With VFX Footage, you’ll get free film grain, footage, and more. Image via Vimeo.

VFX Footage is dedicated to giving away free downloads in what can only be described as one of the best Vimeo channels of all time.

Here, you’ll find free film grain, footage, abstract shapes, and reveals. All is 100% free to use, but donations are graciously welcomed.

10. MTS Films

Screenshot of MTSFILMS website home page
Check out his collection of free RAW RED footage. Image via MTSFilms.

MTSFilms is the personal website of Matthew Scott. You can get free 4K 400ISO film grain from his download page.

There’s also a cool collection of free RAW RED footage you can download to bolster your color grading skills.

Please keep in mind, all the content from MTSFilms is for educational purposes only and shouldn’t be used for commercial use.

Bonus #1: After Effects

Screenshot of Grain Effect in After Effects

You may or may not already know this, but Adobe After Effects has an excellent film grain effect called “Add Grain.” You’ll find presets designed to emulate popular film stocks in the effect.

Be warned, the “Add Grain” effect in After Effects takes a toll on your computer, so be prepared to wait for long rendering times if you use this effect. You can download a free trial of After Effects from Adobe’s website.

Except for #10, all of these downloads are designed to be used with a blending mode in your favorite compositing software.

Bonus #2: Authentic Film Grain

If you want to add natural film grain to your project, check out Emulsion—a collection of 4K film overlays from RocketStock.

Cover image via jakkapan.