R Package to access the Open Movie Database (OMDB) API

It’s not on CRAN yet, but there’s a devtools-installable R package for getting data from the OMDB API.

It covers all of the public API endpoints:

  • find_by_id: Retrieve OMDB info by IMDB ID search
  • find_by_title: Retrieve OMDB info by title search
  • get_actors: Get actors from an omdb object as a vector
  • get_countries: Get countries from an omdb object as a vector
  • get_directors: Get directors from an omdb object as a vector
  • get_genres: Get genres from an omdb object as a vector
  • get_writers: Get writers from an omdb object as a vector
  • print.omdb: Print an omdb result
  • search_by_title: Lightweight omdb title search

Here’s a bit of it in action:

search_by_title("Captain America")
# Source: local data frame [10 x 4]
#                                                   Title  Year    imdbID   Type
# 1                    Captain America: The First Avenger  2011 tt0458339  movie
# 2                   Captain America: The Winter Soldier  2014 tt1843866  movie
# 3                                       Captain America  1990 tt0103923  movie
# 4                                       Captain America  1979 tt0078937  movie
# 5           Iron Man and Captain America: Heroes United  2014 tt3911200  movie
# 6                    Captain America II: Death Too Soon  1979 tt0078938  movie
# 7                                       Captain America  1944 tt0036697  movie
# 8                                       Captain America 1966– tt0206474 series
# 9                        Captain America: Super Soldier  2011 tt1740721   game
# 10 Comic Book Origins: Captain America - Winter Soldier  2014 tt3618126  movie
search_by_title("Captain America", year_of_release=2013)
# Source: local data frame [1 x 4]
#                              Title Year    imdbID  Type
# 1 A Look Back at 'Captain America' 2013 tt3307378 movie
games <- search_by_title("Captain America", type="game")
# Observations: 2
# Variables:
# $ Title  (chr) "Captain America: Super Soldier", "Captain America and the A...
# $ Year   (chr) "2011", "1991"
# $ imdbID (chr) "tt1740721", "tt0421939"
# $ Type   (chr) "game", "game"
#      Title: Captain America: Super Soldier
#       Year: 2011
#      Rated: N/A
#   Released: 2011-07-19
#    Runtime: N/A
#      Genre: Action
#   Director: Michael McCormick, Robert Taylor
#     Writer: Christos N. Gage
#     Actors: Hayley Atwell, Chris Evans, Sebastian Stan, Neal McDonough
#       Plot: You play the Sentinel of Liberty as you raid the Red Skull's scientist
#             minion, Armin Zola's, lair.
#   Language: English
#    Country: USA
#     Awards: N/A
#     Poster: http://ia.media-imdb.com/images/M/
#             MV5BMTUwMzQ0NjE5N15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwODI3MzQxMTE@._V1_SX300.jpg
#  Metascore: N/A
# imdbRating: 7.2
#  imdbVotes: 271
#     imdbID: tt1740721
#       Type: game
find_by_title("Game of Thrones", type="series", season=1, episode=1)
#      Title: Winter Is Coming
#       Year: 2011
#      Rated: TV-MA
#   Released: 2011-04-17
#    Runtime: 62 min
#      Genre: Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
#   Director: Timothy Van Patten
#     Writer: David Benioff (created by), D.B. Weiss (created by), George R.R.
#             Martin ("A Song of Ice and Fire" by), David Benioff, D.B.
#             Weiss
#     Actors: Sean Bean, Mark Addy, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Michelle Fairley
#       Plot: Jon Arryn, the Hand of the King, is dead. King Robert Baratheon plans
#             to ask his oldest friend, Eddard Stark, to take Jon's
#             place. Across the sea, Viserys Targaryen plans to wed his
#             sister to a nomadic warlord in exchange for an army.
#   Language: English
#    Country: USA
#     Awards: N/A
#     Poster: http://ia.media-imdb.com/images/M/
#             MV5BMTk5MDU3OTkzMF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwOTc0ODg5NA@@._V1_SX300.jpg
#  Metascore: N/A
# imdbRating: 8.5
#  imdbVotes: 12584
#     imdbID: tt1480055
#       Type: episode
get_genres(find_by_title("Star Trek: Deep Space Nine", season=5, episode=7))
# [1] "Action"    "Adventure" "Drama"
get_writers(find_by_title("Star Trek: Deep Space Nine", season=4, episode=6))
# [1] "Gene Roddenberry (based upon \"Star Trek\" created by)"
# [2] "Rick Berman (created by)"                              
# [3] "Michael Piller (created by)"                           
# [4] "David Mack"                                            
# [5] "John J. Ordover"
# [1] "Tom Tykwer"     "Andy Wachowski" "Lana Wachowski"
get_countries(find_by_title("The Blind Swordsman: Zatoichi"))
# [1] "Japan"
ichi <- search_by_title("Zatoichi")
bind_rows(lapply(ichi$imdbID, function(x) {
  find_by_id(x, include_tomatoes = TRUE)
})) -> zato
boxplot(zato$tomatoUserMeter, horizontal=TRUE, main="Tomato User Meter", ylim=c(0, 100))
boxplot(zato$imdbRating, horizontal=TRUE, main="IMDB Rating", ylim=c(0, 10))
boxplot(zato$tomatoUserRating, horizontal=TRUE, main="Tomato User Rating", ylim=c(0, 5))


You can find out more at it’s github repo

Cover image from Data-Driven Security
Amazon Author Page

11 Comments R Package to access the Open Movie Database (OMDB) API

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    1. hrbrmstr

      Thx. That’s also interesting. Not sure if OMDB folks have an “issues” forum but I’ll see if I can relay this to them.

  2. Andrew Clark (@pssGuy)

    Yep sorry about that. I think copying and pasting from above I forgot to delete a #

    I’m unfamiliar with OMDB. Do they rely on people posting data?? For instance, I was trying to collect Seinfeld data. but a large proportion are not found

    e.g. findbytitle(“Seinfeld”, type=”series”, season=2, episode=5)
    Series or episode not found!
    data frame with 0 columns and 0 rows

    The imdb page can be found here

    1. hrbrmstr

      Aye. Both IMDb & RT have ToS that expressly forbid scraping and they’ll come find folks who turn that data into an API, esp Amazon. There are a cpl other movie & TV databases with free[mium] APIs that i’ll eventually get to :-)

  3. Chris

    Very nice package! Been testing it out for a couple of days now.
    Just recently however there was an update to the OMDb API, which allows you to get all episode info per season: quote “10/18/15 – You can now return all episodes by using just the “Season” parameter: http://www.omdbapi.com/?t=Game of Thrones&Season=1″ . Would it be possible for you to update your “omdbapi” package to allow a search with an option for only season and not specific episode?
    Thanks in advance!

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