I would like to know if there is an open database for movies that could have the same amount and quality of data as IMDB. I would like it for commercial use, and free if possible.

Same for music, I would like something that would allow me to get the same amount and quality of data as on MusicBrainz.

As far as I know, IMDB and MusicBrainz are not for commercial use.

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    Oh my, of all places you are asking at Open Data SE. What about watching the movies and listening to the songs? You can even mass-crowdsource it... Commented May 23, 2013 at 20:22
  • @DeerHunter Agreed- in fact, I bet you could extract soundtrack artist/song info from Wikipedia and get a pretty good start... Commented May 23, 2013 at 20:36
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    Most of the Musicbrainz database is released under CC0, so nothing should stop you from using it commercially.
    – svick
    Commented May 23, 2013 at 22:14
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    It would be helpful for you to expand this question to be clear if you are asking for (1) technical advice in how to create the data structure, (2) how to license such a data source, or (3) how to get proprietary data for free. Commented May 24, 2013 at 13:16
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    saurabh, as Jeanne asked, it would be useful to clarify the question. It could be read as "how do I go about building an open dataset" or "are there open datasets in this area?"
    – ldodds
    Commented May 24, 2013 at 13:41

8 Answers 8


I'm chosing to answer this from the perspective of "what open datasets are there for movies/songs".

Its worth noting that IMDB and MusicBrainz offer commercial usage agreements, assuming you're happy to pay.

MusicBrainz is an excellent starting point for music metadata. The Core data, which covers the artists, releases, songs is all in the public domain under a CC0 license. It is only the additional "supplementary data" that is published in a CC-BY-NC license.

More information on that here:


Open Data for movies is more scattered. Wikipedia contains a lot of data on movies, actors and directors, all of which should be available in Dbpedia.

Dbpedia is available for use under an Open license.

I think all other sources of movie data will likely require you to pay for some kind of commercial usage.

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    Actually Freebase is open data too and has three times the coverage of DBpedia in the film domain.
    – Tom Morris
    Commented May 25, 2013 at 16:17

MusicBrainz is available for commercial use, although not all of it is free.

Freebase has the majority of the information that's in MusicBrainz (imported from and linked back to MusicBrainz).

The largest source of open movie information is almost certainly Freebase. It is not as strong as IMDB for U.S. movies, but is likely stronger for Bollywood & other geographies. Movies, actors, etc are not only linked to IMDB, but also Netflix, Wikipedia, the books that the movies were adapted from (which are linked to OpenLibrary & Wikipedia), the sound tracks for the movies (which are, in turn, linked to MusicBrainz), etc, etc.

All of Freebase is CC-BY and available for commercial use without charge.

EDIT: I was curious about the relative coverage for the film domain, so here are the stats:

Apparently IMDB sometimes counts different cuts separately while Freebase groups them together, although it's go info on each cut, so the numbers aren't totally comparable, but IMDB has roughly twice as many movies as Freebase and Freebase three times as many as DBpedia. Freebase, like DBpedia, is linked to Wikipedia, so for the 81,684 films in Wikipedia & Freebase you can easily navigate to their Wikipedia article.


"The Million Song Dataset is a freely-available collection of audio features and metadata for a million contemporary popular music tracks"



For movies, in addition to DBPedia or Freebase (which are both heavily wikipedia derived) there is also http://www.omdb.org/ (though it may be shutting down).

See also http://datahub.io/dataset?q=movies

Edit: as Tom Morris points out Freebase whilst using some Wikipedia material has a lot of additional movie info.

  • Films and music are probably the two domains where Freebase has the least overlap with Wikipedia. For music, Freebase includes all of MusicBrainz in addition to Wikipedia. For movies, Google/Metaweb has paid for offshore keyboarding of large amounts of film data.
    – Tom Morris
    Commented Aug 8, 2013 at 3:28

Yes, Freebase is available for commercial use and, I believe, powers a lot of the data behind Wikipedia movie and entity listings:


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    Freebase does provide any of the data in Wikipedia. Some limited portions of Wikipedia infoboxes are parsed into data in Freebase, but nothing flows the other way.
    – Tom Morris
    Commented May 24, 2013 at 22:22

As far as I know Musicbrainz is free to use. The only cost comes in commerical licenses to their live API. You can take a copy of the database freely, create your own server and use as you see fit.


You can refer to Cinemalytics Bollywood Movie APIs. Its free and is community driven, plus you can use it for commercial purpose as well. They also have Songs & Singers information linked with the movies data. Check out their API showcase for Bollywood Movies here.


Some databases for movies :

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