Updated - 18-November-2021
Olympic coverage should be added as a Mini-Series, with the title reflecting the on screen name from the provider, each day's coverage can then be contributed as an individual episode and the production/distribution company added to identify the source - for example, see the London 2012 Olympics.
Independent sporting mini-events (such as the World Cup or Six Nations) should be added as a Mini-Series, with the title reflecting that of the on screen name and the production/distribution companies added to the page. However, each episode should relate to a particular game, such as the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
One off events (usually pay per view) such as UFC or boxing matches should be added as a TV Special, reflecting the name the coverage provider has listed and including any production/distribution companies attached. For example, see UFC 222: Cyborg vs. Kunitskaya.
Years and roman numerals
- IMDb does not allow title years from before the title type existed.
- The year in ()'s should be the year of first public screening of the title. For TV- series this is the broadcast year of the first episode/pilot. For movie titles this year is either the year of general release or of a festival presentation if earlier (note that closed screenings for the crew or the media/buyers/sellers or test screenings of the unfinished product for marketing reasons do not count as public screenings). Please note that there are occasional exceptions to this rule. If there is a long gap between the completion of a film and its first public release it can be more representative to list the year the film was completed so as to more accurately reflect the title on the associated cast and crew name pages. Please see Something's Got to Give (1962) where we use those criteria to list the title under its completion year as there was no additional work completed on the original film in the interim that would warrant the later release date being used as the main title year.
- Please note that we do usually NOT create separate new titles for each season of a TV-show so the year used is the year the show first aired.
- If two films have the same title in the same year we add a "/" followed by roman numerals after the year as necessary. For example, Twilight (2008/I) and Twilight (2008/II).
Capitalization and character sets
When adding the title text (either the primary or alternative), it should follow these rules on capitalization:
- They should not consist of only capitalized letters, even if the title on-screen is fully capitalized. The exception to this rule is if the name itself is an acronym (e.g. R.I.P.D)
- For English, Portuguese, Hebrew, Indian languages - these should all have capital letters at the start of words, with a few exceptions:
- English language words which must begin with a lower-case letter (unless at the end of a title) are: a an and as at by for from in of on or the to with
- French, Italian, Spanish, Scandinavian languages, Hungarian, Dutch, Slovenian, Serbian, Croatian, Russian, Japanese, Mandarin, Cantonese, Greek:
All lower-case letters at the start of words, except first word plus some exceptions (names etc.)
- German: Mixed
- The character set of all primary titles is ISO-LATIN-1. Original titles using other character sets (ISO-LATIN-2, Chinese pictograms, Cyrillic letters etc.) must be transliterated to ISO-LATIN-1. If you are unsure about the rules to follow check examples from the same country to see how it's done. For titles in Russian, there is a special guide available.
- One exception to the "as it appears on screen" rule: Author or filmmaker possessives such as Bram Stoker's Dracula, Disney's The Kid, or Andy Warhol's Flesh are used only in alternate titles with the attribute (complete title) unless it is a part of the joke i.e. Jane Austen's Mafia! or Monty Python's Flying Circus. Note that by the time The Meaning of Life and Life of Brian were released the group had adopted the name "Monty Python" qualifying both as possessives. However, in certain cases, where the possessive helps to identify an otherwise ambiguous title, we will allow the possessive title to be added as the (imdb display title) as opposed to the otherwise (complete title). This should only be submitted as the (imdb display title) if the possessive title is how the title is commonly referred to in that specific country.
- Subtitles are separated from the main title with a colon for English titles and a '-' for German titles IF the title on the 'film' uses no separator. Other languages are not (yet) standardized. If the title on the 'film' already uses a separator it is used.
- A subtitle can be identified by either appearing on a separate screen from the main title, or being in a significantly smaller font.
- When there are 2 or more subtitles following each other use alternatively : and - unless the title card has its own.
(Film) series titles
- For titles in a series (not regular TV series), particularly for short films, only the title of the individual episode is to be used as the main title if the series title is on previous title cards. If series and episode title are on the same card, the primary title is the full title on that card.
- Primary titles that do not include the series (by the above rule) should be submitted with alternate titles that do include the series. The alternate title should be the episode title, separated by a colon from the series title, and should include a "series title" attribute. Episode numbers should be included in primary titles only if the number appears on the (last) title card. If the episode number is implied at the end, it can go to an alternate title.
- Certain type modifiers are controlled by genres or keywords. The "Short" and "Documentary" modifiers are taken directly from the relevant genres. In addition, the keywords tv-mini-series and tv-special cause different display of what would otherwise be a TV series or TV movie.