film

noun, often attributive
\ ˈfilm How to pronounce film (audio) , Southern also ˈfi(ə)m \
plural films

Definition of film

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a thin skin or membranous covering : pellicle
b : an abnormal growth on or in the eye
2 : a thin covering or coating a film of ice
3a : an exceedingly thin layer : lamina
b(1) : a thin flexible transparent sheet (as of plastic) used especially as a wrapping
(2) : a thin sheet of cellulose acetate or nitrocellulose coated with a radiation-sensitive emulsion for taking photographs
4a : movie, motion picture an award-winning film film critics The film will start in ten minutes.
b : the process, art, or business of making movies a career in film She studied film in college.

film

verb
filmed; filming; films

Definition of film (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cover with or as if with a film
2 : to make a motion picture of or from film a scene

intransitive verb

1 : to become covered or obscured with or as if with a film
2 : to make a motion picture

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from film

Noun

filmless \ ˈfilm-​ləs How to pronounce filmless (audio) \ adjective

Verb

filmable \ ˈfil-​mə-​bəl How to pronounce filmable (audio) \ adjective

Examples of film in a Sentence

Noun Have you bought any film for the camera? We haven't had the film developed yet. He's interested in making films about war. We'll start the film at 10:00. He studied film in college. the protective film over a shark's eye A film of ice covered the sidewalk. Verb Television news crew members came to film the interview. She filmed the children playing.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The Oscar nominee was gearing up to start production on her first film as director, The Lost Daughter, before the world abruptly changed in mid-March. Tyler Aquilina, EW.com, "Maggie Gyllenhaal talks making her directorial debut with Homemade Netflix short," 11 July 2020 De Niro, 76, is only expected to make $2.5 million in 2020 and 2021 for his latest film, The Irishman. Mica Soellner, Washington Examiner, "Robert De Niro lawyer says actor struggling financially during coronavirus pandemic," 10 July 2020 Gina Prince-Bythewood talks about her new superhero film, Netflix’s The Old Guard, and how women are changing the genre. David Sims, The Atlantic, "The Woman Who Made the Best Action Movie of 2020," 9 July 2020 For Hargrove, his film is inherently bittersweet, with neither parent alive to see it. Michael Granberry, Dallas News, "Dallas filmmaker’s ‘Miracle Fishing’ tells an incredible story of his father’s kidnapping," 9 July 2020 The filmmakers and cast of the upcoming horror flick Bad Hair stopped by Essence Festival of Culture’s Beauty Carnival to discuss their film, ending hair discrimination and pursuing beauty without limits. Keyaira Boone, Essence, "Vanessa Williams Received Her Flowers From Her 'Bad Hair' Castmates," 9 July 2020 The Crown Act, which stands for Create a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair, garnered nationwide attention in February after director Matthew A. Cherry won an Oscar for his film Hair Love. Aimee Simeon, refinery29.com, "Virginia Becomes The First Southern State To Officially Ban Natural Hair Discrimination," 1 July 2020 The divide is stark, but Thom Browne has come up with an alternative, exciting solution: a poignant art film that depicts a single garment, directed by and starring Moses Sumney. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "Moses Sumney Directs a Resplendent Short Film in Collaboration with Thom Browne," 13 July 2020 The product placement will happen at approximately 8:09 p.m. ET as part of a three-minute film with country singer Kip Moore. Sebastian Blanco, Car and Driver, "How to Watch 2021 Ford Bronco's Debut on Monday, July 13," 12 July 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb At first, Hargrave and director David Leitch expected to film her throwing a punch or two before yelling cut and resetting the scene. Ale Russian, PEOPLE.com, "Charlize Theron 'Finally' Conquered Her Fear of Riding Horses for New Movie: 'It Was Therapeutic'," 8 July 2020 This is the best site in California for the chance to see, photograph or film river otters. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "Want to watch an elk calf being born? Grizzly Island offers rare sight," 26 June 2020 Meagan Good and La La Anthony to film public service announcements from their homes during the shutdown, encouraging minority business owners to apply. Keith L. Alexander, Washington Post, "How a billionaire helped thousands of minority-owned small businesses secure urgent aid in Washington," 25 June 2020 One exception for us was John Wildman, a Dallas filmmaker and film publicity consultant who’s involved with both the Women Texas Film Festival and the EarthX Film Festival. Michael Granberry, Dallas News, "After its initial manic success, Dallas film company Cinestate now faces a major controversy," 18 June 2020 Residents came out along the route to film marchers with their cellphones. Patrick Danner, ExpressNews.com, "Some 300 march for racial justice in Alamo Heights," 6 June 2020 However, the approval of the ordinance was met with social media outrage mistakenly claiming people weren't allowed to film cops anymore in Tucson. Alana Minkler, The Arizona Republic, "Tucson City Council votes to repeal controversial crime-scene ordinance after backlash," 9 July 2020 And also: Which movie or TV show will be the first to film and wrap in this new, socially distant world? Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "Zendaya Secretly Filmed an Entire, Professional-Level Movie Amid the Coronavirus," 9 July 2020 The family then traveled to Vancouver, Canada, to film for the series, which is based on the books written by Ann M. Martin. Emma Colton, Washington Examiner, "Netflix's The Baby-Sitters Club features 9-year-old transgender girl at center of Texas bathroom controversy," 9 July 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'film.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of film

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1604, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for film

Noun

Middle English filme, from Old English filmen; akin to Greek pelma sole of the foot, Old English fell skin — more at fell

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about film

Time Traveler for film

Time Traveler

The first known use of film was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for film

Last Updated

28 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Film.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/film. Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for film

film

noun
How to pronounce film (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of film

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a special material that is used for taking photographs
: the process, art, or business of making movies
: a thin layer on or over the surface of something

film

verb

English Language Learners Definition of film (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make a movie of (something) : to photograph (an event, scene, etc.) with a movie or video camera
: to make a movie

film

noun
\ ˈfilm How to pronounce film (audio) \

Kids Definition of film

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a roll of material prepared for taking pictures
3 : a thin coating or layer

film

verb
filmed; filming

Kids Definition of film (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to make a movie
2 : to photograph on a film

film

noun
\ ˈfilm How to pronounce film (audio) \

Medical Definition of film

1a : a thin skin or membranous covering : pellicle
b : an abnormal growth on or in the eye
2a : an exceedingly thin layer : lamina
b : a thin flexible transparent sheet of cellulose acetate or cellulose nitrate coated with a radiation-sensitive emulsion for taking photographs or making radiographs

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on film

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for film

Spanish Central: Translation of film

Nglish: Translation of film for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of film for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about film

Comments on film

What made you want to look up film? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt painting a young scholar and his tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!