Most Common Words in Movies and TV Shows

Most Common Words in Movies and TV Shows

We analyzed over 40,000 unique words that appeared at least 6 times in movies and TV shows to see which words are the most frequently used. Over 29 million words were analyzed, with 1,000 most frequently used words making up for over 85.50% of all words.

When it comes to the most common words, we make a distinction between different classes of words. For the main analysis, we focus on the 4 main word classes: nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs.

  • The verb “know” is the most frequently used word in movies and TV shows, accounting for 2.81% of all main words and 0.83% of words overall.
  • The adverb “just” is the second most common word in cinema, with a frequency of 2.29% among main words and an overall frequency of 0.67%.
  • Another adverb, “so,” ranks third on the list of the most common words in movies, followed by another adverb, “well.”
  • The five most frequently used words in movies account for over 10% of all main words in cinema, while top 14 words account for over 20% of all words, all being either a verb or an adverb.
  • Over 50% of words used in films and series are comprised of only 85 unique words.
RankWordTypeOverall frequencyFrequency among main words
1knowVerb0.83%2.81%
2justAdverb0.67%2.29%
3soAdverb0.58%1.97%
4wellAdverb0.53%1.81%
5getVerb0.43%1.48%
6hereAdverb0.43%1.45%
7goingVerb0.42%1.41%
8wantVerb0.35%1.20%
9thinkVerb0.35%1.19%
10nowAdverb0.35%1.17%
11goVerb0.35%1.17%
12gotVerb0.29%1.00%
13seeVerb0.26%0.88%
14comeVerb0.25%0.85%
15goodAdjective0.25%0.85%
16reallyAdverb0.23%0.79%
17lookVerb0.23%0.78%
18timeNoun0.22%0.75%
19backAdverb0.22%0.73%
20meanVerb0.21%0.72%
  • Overall, all word classes included, the most frequently used word in movies and TV shows is the pronoun “You”, accounting for over 4.18% of all words.
  • Another pronoun, ” I “, is the second most commonly used word in cinema, appearing 3.60% of the time.
  • Together with the particle “to”, these words account for over 10% of all words used in movies and TV shows.
  • Over a quarter of all words used in films and series come from the top 14 unique words on the list.
  • 63 most frequently used words in movies account for over 50% of all words.
RankWordTypeFrequency
1youPronoun4.18%
2IPronoun3.60%
3toParticle2.82%
4theDeterminer2.64%
5aDeterminer1.93%
6andCoordinating conjunction1.64%
7thatSubordinating conjunction1.42%
8itPronoun1.33%
9ofAdposition1.14%
10mePronoun1.07%
11whatPronoun0.98%
12isAuxiliary verb0.97%
13inAdposition0.91%
14thisDeterminer0.86%
15knowVerb0.83%
16I’mPronoun0.79%
17forAdposition0.74%
18noDeterminer0.73%
19haveAuxiliary verb0.72%
20myPronoun0.72%
  • When it comes to word classes, nouns have the most unique words among the 1,000 most frequent words in movies, accounting for over 28.60% of unique words. In addition, proper nouns cover 8.40% of all unique words.
  • Verbs account for 25.00% of unique words, which means that more than half of all unique words used in movies and TV series are either a noun or a verb.
  • Adjectives make up 11.10% of all unique words in cinema, while adverbs account for 7.10%.
  • Even though pronouns account for only 5.50% of all unique words, they are the most frequently used word class in movies, covering more than 23.97% of all words.
Word classShare of unique words among 1,000 most common wordsFrequency among 1,000 most common words
Noun28.60%8.73%
Verb25.00%13.81%
Adjective11.10%4.38%
Proper noun8.40%1.44%
Adverb7.10%6.76%
Pronoun5.50%23.97%
Auxiliary verb3.90%9.32%
Adposition3.20%8.99%
Subordinating conjunction1.80%4.18%
Interjection1.60%2.15%
Numeral1.20%0.66%
Determiner1.20%8.03%
Other0.70%0.66%
Coordinating conjunction0.40%2.81%
Particle0.20%4.08%

Most frequent words in movies by word class

  • Looking at the 4 main word classes in English, the word “time” is the most commonly used noun in movies and TV series. It accounts for over 2.98% of all nouns.
  • The second most used noun on screens is “something,” appearing on 2.51% of occasions among nouns.
  • The most used proper noun in movies is “god,” accounting for 1.12% of all nouns. The most used name in movies and series is Jack.
  • “Good” is the most used adjective in movies and TV shows, accounting for 7.43% of all adjectives, followed by “little” ((4.88%).
  • Among verbs, the most commonly used word is “know”, accounting for 7.13% of all verbs used in movies, and “get” is in the second place with a frequency of 3.74%.
RankNounFrequency within the groupPronounFrequency within the groupAdjectiveFrequency within the groupVerbFrequency within the groupAdverbFrequency within the group
1time2.55%you23.50%good7.43%know7.13%just11.66%
2something2.15%I23.50%little4.88%get3.74%so10.02%
3way1.96%it9.53%sorry4.06%going3.58%well9.20%
4thing1.50%me5.22%said3.53%want3.03%here7.61%
5man1.47%what5.43%great2.59%think3.02%now5.98%
6anything1.36%my3.51%better2.58%go2.98%really4.05%
7life1.35%your3.14%first2.50%got2.54%back3.74%
8thought1.19%we4.29%other2.44%see2.24%then3.09%
9people1.12%all2.64%fine2.35%come2.15%never2.65%
10god1.12%he3.61%last2.24%look1.99%too2.57%

People would be surprised how many words can be created from just 3-letter combinations. To get the most out of every letter combination, WordsRated has created Word Descrambler, which will help with learning every possible word from any set of random letters.