6 Best IMDB Scrapers 2022: How to Scrape IMDB Movie Data with Python

Last Updated: August 2, 2022
Sadly, the IMDB website does not provide an API for collecting data for free. If you want to collect data from IMDB, you will have to look for other ways.
Best IMDB Scrapers
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The best IMDB scraper in 2022, as found in our independent testing, is Bright Data!


If you have been on the lookout for the best web scrapers that you can use for data extraction from the IMDB website, then you have come to the right page.

In this article, we will talk about how you can create your own IMDB scraper. Additionally, we will also provide some of the best IMDB scrappers in the market, apart from providing a guide on how to create custom scrapers. 

IMDB is considered one of the best places if you are looking for information and data on various TV shows and movies.

While this platform did start as a hobby, it has become one of the largest databases for TV shows and movies today. As of now, the platform has more than 250 million items listed on its database. 

Of course, you can learn more about TV shows and movies and their descriptions; however, the best part of this platform is that it also has other user-generated content like reviews and ratings.

You can even look for side comments, which makes IMDB one of the best sources of information for anything you want to watch on your TV. IMDB is a great platform to collect data related to movies and TV shows. 

Sadly, the IMDB website does not provide an API for collecting data for free. If you want to collect data from IMDB, you will have to look for other ways.

As most of us already know, opting for manual data collection for any scale is an error-prone and time-consuming process; in short, this task is very difficult. 

Therefore, you can make use of the best web scrapers available in the market to scrape data from the IMDB website. In this article, we will be discussing some of the top scraping tools that you can find for scraping data from the IMDB website.

We will also discuss how you can develop a custom IMDB scraper with some basic coding. 

Of course, you will have to have an understanding of how to code if you are trying to create a new IMDB scraper from scratch. Thankfully, there are several already-made web scrapers available in the market that you can use. 

The best aspect of these already-made scrapers is that you do not even have to write a single line of code, which makes them perfect for non-coders.

In this section, we will be talking about the best IMDB scrapers in the market; four out of these tools can be used by non-coders.

Best IMDB Scrapers 2022

Here’s a quick look at the best IMDB scrapers:

  1. Bright Data – 🏆 Winner!
  2. Apify IMDB Scraper
  3. ParseHub
  4. Scrapestorm
  5. WebHarvy
  6. WebScraper.io Extension

1. Bright Data

Bright Data Data Collector

Bright Data is easily one of the best IMDb scrapers in the industry, because they have a knack of knowing what their clients need, and they have separated their features into different categories, so that you can choose to work with either every feature they’ve got right now, or just a few.

One thing that stands out to us about this IMDb scraper is the fact that they can help you with a proxy as well, which is essential if you want to be able to scrape the web without having to worry about your personal information being leaked.

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We don’t suggest that you scrape any website out there without using a proxy, so the fact that you can get everything done under one roof is really advantageous.

When it comes to their IMDb scraping features, they can help you with the data collector, which is going to help you automate your data collection, providing you with a huge amount of flexibility, and the reality that you don’t need to know anything about coding in order to make the most of their features.

They also have a search engine collector so that you can get real user results from search engines, and you can use any keywords in order to do this.

2. Apify IMDB Scraper

  • Cost: $49 for 100 Actor compute units
  • Availability Of Free Trials: Starter plans offer 10 Actor compute units
  • Format Of The Output Data: JSON
  • OS Supported: Cloud-based; accessible by API
Apify IMDB Scrapers

If you are looking for one of the best IMDB scrapers, you can opt for the Apify IMDB Scraper, which is built on top of the Apify platform.

This scraper is a NodeJS platform, which means that you can only use it if you are a developer. When you are looking into the top IMDB scraper, then the Apify IMDB scraper. Additionally, you will not have to worry about developing a custom scraper. 

The first step here is that you will have to add the Apify module. Once done, you are good to go. You will be able to extract and download the data you are looking for about TV serials and movies from IMDB.

However, you will first have to add proxies beforehand. It is suggested that you make use of residential proxies like Smartproxy, Bright Data, and Apify. 

3. ParseHub

  • Cost: Availability of free and paid plans
  • Availability Of Free Trials: Access to advanced features for an extra cost
  • Format Of The Output Data: JSON, Excel
  • OS Supported: Desktop, Cloud
ParseHub

ParseHub is one of the top web scrapers that you can use to scrape the IMDB website. However, you should also know that it is not a specialized IMDB scrapper; it is a general scrapping tool that you can use for scraping the IMDB platform. 

This tool has been developed to extract data from all types of websites, particularly those platforms that heavily make use of JavaScript.

One of the best aspects of ParseHub is that the support team will also provide you with a tutorial on how to scrape the required data from the IMDB website. If you want to learn more, you can simply click here to learn how to scrape data from the IMDB website here. 

Another interesting fact about ParseHub is that you do not have to pay anything to make use of its services. This makes it perfect for people who do not have any budget to spare.

Of course, you will be provided with more features if you opt for the paid plans. 

4. Scrapestorm

  • Cost: $4.99 monthly payment
  • Availability Of Free Trials: Availability of free and paid plans
  • Format Of The Output Data: Google Sheets, MySQL, JSON, Excel, CSV, TXT, etc. 
  • OS Supported: Cloud, Desktop
Scrapestorm

Scrapestorm is another great choice if you are looking for IMDB scrapping tools. While it is quite a new tool, it has definitely become one of the best scrappers in the market. Similar to platforms like ParseHub, you do not require to learn how to code.

The visual operation makes it easy to scrape data from IMDB; the steps are so uncomplicated that even newbies can use them. 

This tool has been developed by the crawler team of Google (ex).

Hence, you can rest assured knowing that the tool will deliver you the best results. The tool is fitted with the best advanced features that are otherwise not offered with other scrapping tools. 

Thanks to the powerful AI, the scrapping tool will detect the data of interest easily and automatically; this means that you will not have to keep interfering with the tool.

If you want to scrape IMDB data, you simply need to specify the data of interest. This tool can be used for platforms like Linux, Windows, and Mac. 

5. WebHarvy

  • Cost: Single-user license costs $139
  • Availability Of Free Trials: None
  • Format Of The Output Data: TSV, XML., JSON, CSV, TXT, etc.
  • OS Supported: Desktop
WebHarvy

WebHarvey is yet another great IMDB scrapper available in the market. Similar to all the other scrappers mentioned above, WebHarvey is a generic web scrapper that can help scrape data from the IMDB website.

The tool is quite intuitive and easy to understand and use. Additionally, it also provides a wide range of features that you can use. 

WebHarvey can be used to scrape a wide range of data like categories from multiple pages and even by keywords.

The automation pattern detection feature will automate your tasks if you want to keep scraping data from all sorts of websites. If you are looking forward to applying Regular Expression, WebHarvey is also a great choice. 

Another great aspect of WebHarvey is that you can use this tool for image scraping as well. It will also allow you to save the scrapped data in various database formats. 

6. WebScraper.io Extension

  • Cost: Freemium 
  • Availability Of Free Trials: Freemium
  • Format Of The Output Data: JSON, XLSX, CSV, etc. 
  • OS Supported: Available as an extension for Firefox and Chrome
WebScraper.io Extension

WebScraper.io was developed to provide web scrapping capabilities to everybody. Hence, the company has provided an extension for Chrome and Firefox so that you can easily scrape the data of interest from the IMDB website for free.

WebScraper.io is a cloud-based scraper that is also available as a paid tool if you are looking for more advanced features.

However, the free version is more than enough to scrape the IMDB website. As of now, more than 400K people from around the world make use of WebScraper.io. 

All you need to do is use the point-and-click interface where you can define the data that you want to scrape.

This tool has been developed to be used on all types of websites, which also includes modern platforms that are used for native applications.

The scrapped data can be exported for JSON, CSV, and Excel. 

An Overview Of IMDB Scraping

IMDB scraping can be described as the method of using computer bots to extract public data from the IMDB website.

As mentioned above, IMDB does not provide an API for those who are interested in extracting data from its web pages. Thankfully, the way IMDB scrapers work is very simple. 

It will initiate and send a web request to download the page where the data of interest is present, similar to how normal web browsers do.

But it will comb through the content of the page instead of rendering it as browsers do. This way, the bot will start looking for the data for scraping and will parse it. Once done, the data will then be stored in a database or a file. 

However, you should also remember that the method mentioned above is just how the model works. Using IMDB scrappers (or even regular scrappers for that fact) is a lot more complicated.

You should also know that IMDB makes use of anti-bot systems to prevent users from scraping its data. 

These systems will analyze individual requests and will correlate them with specific indexes to ensure that the requests originate from authentic individuals; if it finds out that it is an act of web scraping, the user will be blocked immediately.

Your web scraper will only be able to scrape the data if it remains undetected. 

Thankfully, there are many simple ways to ensure that you bypass these anti-bot systems by using some popular already-made IMDB scrapers.

Additionally, we will also talk about a scraping system that you can develop on your own. 

Scraping IMDB Data – Using Beautifulsoup, Requests, And Python

You need to remember that this section is specifically for people who know how to code; here, we will learn how you can build a custom IMDB scraper.

If you have no idea about writing codes, it is recommended that you move directly to the next section where we have listed down some of the best already-made scrapers for you. 

As said previously, we will learn how to build a custom IMDB scrapper in this section.

Custom IMDB scrappers are considered better alternatives to already-made ones because they are more flexible and can be integrated better with custom software and scripts.

This is quite an important advantage you will get if you can develop your own tool. However, the other side of the coin here is that you may also have to deal with a lot more problems.

Since IMDB does not allow scraping and extraction of data, you will have to build a scrapper that can bypass all the measures that are placed to prevent scrapping. 

The most important barrier used by IMDB is IP tracking and blocking; if you want to evade this problem, it is recommended that you make use of proxies.

You can make use of residential rotating proxies to deal with this problem – these are types of proxies that make use of real IP addresses and keep rotating them frequently.

Some of the best rotating residential proxies in the market include Shifter, SmartProxy, and Bright Data

Apart from making use of proxies, you will also have to rotate and set headers, place random delays between the requests, and even add referral headers so that you will not be detected by the anti-spam systems.

When it comes to coding in Python, you can make use of Beatufulsoup and Requests. This is because the IMDB site does not require you to enable JavaScript.

Requests aid in sending HTTP requests while Beautifusoup will help in data parsing from the HTML page that has been downloaded. 

Scraping Movie Data From IMDB Website

IMDB

In this section, we will talk about a sample code that we have provided for you using Beatuifulsoup, Requests, and Python libraries.

All these tools will help you scrape data about movies. All you need to do is provide the URL of the IMDB movie and you will be provided with the Metascore, ratings, description, and name. 

When you take a first look at the script, you will notice that it is very simple and you will not have to provide a lot of requests.

This means that there is no anti-scraping bypassing technique integrated nor proxies and exceptions are used and handled, respectively.

We have provided you with this script only to show how it is done. If you keep using it, you will definitely get blocked by the IMDB website. 

# import both Requests and Beautifulsoup

import requests

from bs4 import BeautifulSoup

class IMDBScraper:

 def __init__(self, url):

      self.url = url

self.download_page()

def download_page(self):

      # method for downloading the hotel page

self.page = requests.get(self.url).text

def scrape_data(self):

      #method for scraping out movie title and description

      soup = BeautifulSoup(self.page, “html.parser”)

movie_title = soup.find(“h1”, {“data-testid”: “hero-title-block__title”}).text

movie_description = soup.find(“span”, {“data-testid”: “plot-xl”}).text

      return {“title”: movie_title,

              “description”: movie_description,

               }

urls = [“https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2382320/?ref_=hm_fanfav_tt_i_3_pd_fp1”,]

for url in urls:

   x = IMDBScraper(url)

  print(x.scrape_data())

Final Thoughts

From the above, it is now understood that using the best web scrapper is not just enough to scrape data from IMDB. In fact, even the best of these tools can fail.

You need to understand how such tools work so that you are successful at scraping data of interest from IMDB.

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Written by Jason Wise

Hi! I’m Jason. I tend to gravitate towards business and technology topics, with a deep interest in social media, privacy and crypto. I enjoy testing and reviewing products, so you’ll see a lot of that by me here on EarthWeb.
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