I received an Apple TV3 for Christmas this last year, and I absolutely love it. I can take my DVDs and rip them into iTunes on my PC, then stream them wirelessly to my AppleTV connected to the big LCD flat screen TV in the living room. When you rip a DVD and import it into Apple TV, it creates a nice thumbnail image to distinguish each movie from another in the list on the screen. However, recently when I rip a DVD all I get is a green thumbnail like the image below instead of a distinguishable movie thumbnail. Although its not a huge deal, I still want to create a recognizable thumbnail image for each movie so its easy to find the one I want.

iTunes Green Thumbnail

This problem is not specifically Apple TV related, because the green thumbnail shows up in iTunes as well. It may be related to the upgrade to iTunes 11, but I can’t be sure.

To fix this issue, follow these directions to find and import a movie thumbnail into iTunes for each movie that has a green thumbnail.

How to Correct Green Thumbnail in Itunes Movie List

1) Choose a movie that has a green thumbnail in iTunes

2) Open an internet browser and go to the Internet Movie Database by clicking on the link below


3) In the search box at the top of the web page type the name of the movie. The movie should appear in the drop down list. Click on it.

4) When the movie page appears, you should see a movie poster image that you can save to your hard drive.

5) In Internet Explorer, right click on the image and click Save Picture As. Then choose the directory where you want the image saved and type a name for the image. Click Save and the image will be saved to your computer.

6) Now open Itunes

7) Click on the Movie selection in the left column

8) Find the movie with the green thumbnail. As long as you are not viewing the List view you should be able to see the thumbnails.

9) Right click on the movie and click on Get Info

10) Click the Artwork tab

11) Click Add and find the movie thumbnail in the directory you saved on your hard drive. Click on it.

12) Click Open to upload the image into iTunes

13) Click Ok

You should now see the movie thumbnail for the selected movie instead of the green thumbnail. If you open Apple TV the correct thumbnail should appear as well.


If you have thumbnails for other movies in Itunes that don’t match the movie poster thumbnails, you can use this same technique to replace the original thumbnail with a new and improved one. 

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Filed under: Tutorials

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