How to Run After Effects Scripts with Keyboard Shortcuts

Adobe After Effects has a keyboard shortcut file which allows us to modify or add our own shortcut keys. To run scripts with keyboard shortcuts, you need to define the keys but before that install the script you’d like to run into your scripts folder (Adobe After Effects <version>/ Support Files/ Scripts).

Rename the script file to be alphabetically towards the top of the scripts list. For example 01-Script.jsx should put the script at the top of the list.

Run After Effects Scripts with Keyboard Shortcuts

Now, navigate to After Effects Preferences folder:

Windows – <drive>\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\After Effects\<version>
Mac OS – <drive>/Users/<username>/Library/Preferences/Adobe/After Effects/<version>

The Library folder is hidden in OS X. If you need to open it, make sure you are in the Finder, hold down the Option key, and then choose Go > Library.  Refer here.

In After Effects Preference Folder, open the “Adobe After Effects <version> Shortcuts” file in a text editor. To be on the safer side, backup the file before modifying it.

Run After Effects Scripts with Keyboard Shortcuts

Open the shortcuts.txt file and search for “ExecuteScriptMenuItem” and choose which script item you want to run and assign a shortcut to it. Since they are in alphabetical order, the first script in the list will be ExecuteScriptMenuItem01, second will be ExecuteScriptMenuItem02 and so on. Make sure to check for conflicts before assigning a shortcut keys combination.

Run After Effects Scripts with Keyboard Shortcuts

If you want to reset your shortcuts back to the defaults, Delete or Rename the file and relaunch After Effects.

Note for MAC Users

There is a bug on Mac where the first item is ExecuteScriptMenuItem02 (it’s all shifted forward by one).