Kodi is an amazing platform for streaming, but let’s face it: unofficial content sources can get disorganized fast. But with the Universal Movie Scraper add-on, you can pull metadata from IMBD and label your collection for easier viewing. We show you how to get started in the walkthrough below.
IMDB, or the Internet Movie Database, is one of the most useful sites on the web. It has information about almost every big film that has been made in the recent history of cinema. If there’s an actor you recognise but can’t place, or if you want to know who produced or directed a film, then IMDB is an invaluable resource. There’s also a ton of extra content like quotes, trivia, and user ratings for different movies.
IMDB is useful as more than just a website though. You can also use it to pull information about films in your collection and to populate meta details about what you’re watching. If you use the Kodi open source media centre software, then you can use IMDB to pull up information about your library to be displayed in Kodi. Below we’ll walk you through some of the add-ons which you can install to let you use IMDB on Kodi.
Before Using Kodi, You Need a VPN
Before we can get started with installing the add-ons, we should first consider the issue of security. Though the Kodi software itself is free, open source, and fully legal to use, some third-party add-ons exist in a legal grey area. This means that it’s risky to use Kodi add-ons over an unsecured internet connection. If your ISP or a law enforcement agency checks your online activity, they could find evidence of you streaming or downloading content illegally and you could be liable for prosecution or a fine.
NordVPN – Unbreakable Security for Kodi
Even if you’re not streaming anything illegally, ISPs and copyright holders will do everything they can to persecute your Kodi traffic if they detect it. This can include throttling, service interruptions, and even more aggressive legal action, so it’s important to take preventative measures. The single most effective way to hide your Kodi traffic is with a VPN, and the best VPN bar none is NordVPN.
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Installing and Using The Universal Movie Scraper
A scraper is a program which pulls information off public websites and adds it to your files in a neat and organised way. In this case, the scraper will tale information from IMDB and other movie database sites and add it to the videos in your Kodi library. That means that you can click on any of your movies and see information about the cast, crew, plot synopsis, and much more. This add-on pulls information primarily from IMDB, but can also be used to scrape from TMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, Trackt.tv, and others.
To install the Universal Movie Scraper:
- Start on your Kodi home page
- Select Add-ons
- Click the icon that looks like a box
- Select Install from repository
- Select Kodi Add-on repository
- Select Information providers
- Select Movie information
- Scroll down until you find Universal Movie Scraper and click it
- A page describing the add-on will open. Click install from the menu at the bottom
- Wait for a moment and a notification will appear once the add-on has been installed
To change the settings of the Universal Movie Scraper, right click on the icon and select Settings. From here you can change where information is pulled from. By default, information comes from IMDB which is what we want. But if you would rather use another service instead, like themoviedb.org, then you can change this here.
You can add a new media folder to your Kodi installation by going to Movies, then to Add videos…, then by navigating to the folder on your hard drive where your movie files are. Then a popup will appear. Change “This directory contains” to “movies” and a selection saying “Choose information provider” appears below. Select Universal Movie Scraper here, then next time you refresh your library you will see information and cover art has been added to all your movies.
Once this add-on is activated, it will automatically crawl through your movie collection and pull information about each movie from IMDB. You can check on progress by looking at the white text in the top right hand corner.
Now when you open your Movies section, you’ll see posters and summaries of each of your films. Right click on a film title and select Information to see more detailed info on the film from IMDB, like the cast, the crew, the rating, the studio, and more.
Alternative – The Confluence Skin
Another way to show IMDB information in your Kodi installation is to use a skin with video details included. A skin changes the look of your Kodi installation without changing the underlying settings, add-ons, or repositories. That means that you can switch skins whenever you fancy a new look for your Kodi, without losing your previous settings.
The Confluence skin is particularly popular with movie buffs thanks to its clean layout and lots of information about movies, which is automatically pulled from IMDB. Confluence was the default skin on Kodi v16, but it was changed for v17. If you prefer the classic look and you want to have the IMDB information displayed next to your movies, then you can install the Confluence skin like this:
- Start on your Kodi home page
- Go to Settings (the icon that looks like a cog)
- Go to Interface settings
- Select Skin from the left hand menu
- If you’re on v17, the option for Skin will read Estuary. Click on this
- A popup will appear with skin options. Click Get more… on the right hand side
- Scroll down the list to Confluence and click on it
- The installation will begin. This might take a minute or two
- When a popup box appears, click Yes to keep changes
- Once the installation is finished, you’ll see that your Kodi now looks like the old v16 style
With the Confluence skin installed, the movies in your collection will be represented by an image of their poster. When you select a movie on the left, a panel will appear on the right with all the information about cast, synopsis, and crew. This makes it very easy to see the IMDB info at a glance.
Here are three different ways to get information from IMDB onto your Kodi installation. Which one you should use depends on how much information you want to pull, and whether you want to be able to download whole films as well as film information. Whichever you pick, they will help to keep your Kodi library up to date, informative, and easier to navigate through.
Do you have another favourite way to use IMDB, or another favourite scraper for movie info? Or are you having trouble with installing these add-ons and you need help? Then let us know in the comments below!