Note: This script was intended to be an NZBGet post-processing and scheduling script wrapper for Subliminal. The script will work with SABnzbd (starting at v2.0.0+) and can also work fine as a standalone script for others too. See the Command Line section below for details how you can easily use this on it's own (without NZBGet or SABnzbd).

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Subliminal Processing Script

Subliminal was originally written by Antoine Bertin (Diaoul Ael). This tool I'm hosting here merely acts as a wrapper to it by enhancing the great functionality it already provides. Subliminal allows us to take a video file (and/or a directory containing videos) you provide it. From there it makes use of a series of websites in efforts to obtain the subtitles associated with the videos it scanned. This wrapper extends this functionallity by controlling how many interenet requests are made for videos without subtitles. This script will prevents querying videos over and over again that simply don't have subtitles at all.

I do however maintain a fork of the Subliminal 0.7.x branch here where I've added my own enhancements to help make this tool do what I want to. Enhancments such as:

Most of my changes actually made it back into the original source code (pull request #404). However I still like to maintain my own fork in case of an unforseen enhancment gets pushed upstream that breaks this wrapper.

This tool can also notify you using Apprise when a subtitle has been retrieved too!

Installation Instructions

  1. Ensure you have Python v2.7 installed onto your system.
    # Pull in dependencies:
    pip install -r requirements.txt
  2. Simply place the and Subliminal directory together.
    • NZBGet users: you'll want to place these inside of your nzbget/scripts directory. Please ensure you are running (at least) NZBGet v11.0 or higher. You can acquire the latest version of of it from here.
    • SABnzbd users: you'll want to place these inside of your sabnzbd/scripts directory. You may also want to read this wiki link on maintaining your own Subliminal's Configuration file.
    • The Non-NZBGet and SABnzbd users can also use this script via a cron (or simply call it from the command line) to automatically poll directories for the latest subtitles for the video content within it. See the Command Line section below for more instructions on how to do this.

Note: The Subliminal directory provides all of the nessisary dependencies in order for this script to work correctly. The directory is only required if you do not have the packages already available to your global environment. These dependant packages are all identified under the Dependencies section below.

Supported Subtitle Sites

The table below identifies the provider supports and the location that content is retrieved from.

Provider Source


The following dependencies are already provided for you within the Subliminal directory and no further effort is required by you. However, it should be known that depends on the following packages:

Name Version Source
pysrt 1.0.1
babelfish 0.5.4
beautifulsoup4 4.3.2
python-dateutil 2.2
dogpile-cache 0.5.4
dogpile-core 0.4.1
enzyme 0.4.1
guesslanguage 0.2.1
guessit 0.10.3
html5lib 0.999
ordereddict 1.1
repoze.lru 0.6
setuptools 0.6.10
silpa_common 0.3
six 1.6.1
stevedore 0.14
subliminal [P] 0.7.5
pyasn1 0.1.7
pyxdg 0.25
chared 1.2.1
decorator 4.3.0

Note: The items above denoted with a [P] were patched in efforts to:

To be as transparent as possible, all patches have been provided in the /patches directory.

Command Line has a built in command line interface that can be easily tied to a cron entry or can be easilly called from the command line to automate the fetching of subtitles.

Here are the switches available to you:

Usage: [options]

  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -S DIR, --scandir=DIR
                        The directory to scan against. Note: that by setting
                        this variable, it is implied that you are running this
                        from the command line.
  -a AGE, --maxage=AGE  The maximum age a file can be to be considered
                        searchable. This value is represented in hours. The
                        default value is 24 hours.
  -n ENCODING, --encoding=ENCODING
                        The system encoding to use (utf-8, ISO-8859-1, etc).
                        The default value is 'UTF-8'.
  -l LANG, --language=LANG
                        The language the fetch the subtitles in (en, fr, etc).
                        The default value is 'en'.
  -p PROVIDER1,PROVIDER2,etc, --providers=PROVIDER1,PROVIDER2,etc
                        Specify a list of providers (use commas as delimiters)
                        to identify the providers you wish to use. The
                        following will be used by default: 'opensubtitles,tvsu
  -s, --single          Download content without the language code in the
                        subtitle filename.
  -b, --basic           Do not attempt to parse additional information from
                        the video file. Running in a basic mode is much faster
                        but can make it more difficult to determine the
                        correct subtitle if more then one is matched.
  -x PATH1,PATH2,etc, --cross-reference=PATH1,PATH2,etc
                        Specify an optional list of directories to scan for
                        subs first before checking on the internet. This is
                        for directories containing subs (.srt files) that you
                        have already downloaded ahead of time.
  -z SIZE_IN_MB, --minsize=SIZE_IN_MB
                        Specify the minimum size a video must be to be worthy
                        of of checking for subtiles. This value is interpreted
                        in MB (Megabytes) and defaults to 150 MB.
  -c MINSCORE, --minscore=MINSCORE
                        When scoring multiple matched subtitles for a video,
                        this value identifies the threshold to assume the
                        subtitle is no good and should be thrown away when
                        being compared against others. It currently defaults
                        to 20.
  -k, --ignore-embedded
                        If embedded subtitles were detected, choose not to use
                        them and continue to search for the subtitles hosted
                        by the identified provider(s).
  -e ENCODING, --force-encoding=ENCODING
                        Optionally specify the subtitle's file encoding toa
                        specific type (utf-8, ISO-8859-1, etc). If none is
                        specified then the file is left as is.
  -f, --force           Force a download reguardless of the file age. This
                        switch negates any value specified by the --age (-a)
  -o, --overwrite       Overwrite a subtitle in the event one is already
  -m MODE, --fetch-mode=MODE
                        Identify the fetch mode you wish to invoke, the
                        options are: 'ImpairedOnly', 'StandardOnly',
                        'BestScore', 'StandardFirst', 'ImpairedFirst'.  The
                        default value is: BestScore
  --addic7ed-user=USER  Optionally use login credentials when accessing
                        Addic7ed's server. This option is ignored if the
                        --addic7ed-pass switch is not specified.
  --addic7ed-pass=PASS  Optionally use login credentials when accessing
                        Addic7ed's server. This option is ignored if the
                        --addic7ed-user switch is not specified.
  --opensubs-user=USER  Optionally use login credentials when accessing Open
                        Subtitles's server. This option is ignored if the
                        --opensubs-pass switch is not specified.
  --opensubs-pass=PASS  Optionally use login credentials when accessing Open
                        Subtitles's server. This option is ignored if the
                        --opensubs-user switch is not specified.
  -t, --tidy-subs       Post process tidying of subtitle.
  -u URL(s), --notify-urls=URL(s)
                        Specify 1 or more notification URLs in their URL
                        format ie: growl://mypass@localhost. See
               for more information
                        on the different kinds of supported Notification URLs.
  -T COUNT, --throttle-threshold=COUNT
                        The threshold defines the number of concurrent
                        requests made to the remote subtitle websites before a
                        temporary wait/pause occurs (defined by --throttle).
                        The goal of the threshold is to prevent one from being
                        banned for abusing the server (which can happen if you
                        make to many requests).  This setting is ideal for
                        those users who are scanning and getting subtitles for
                        a very large media library. Set this value to 0
                        (zero) if you want to disable this feature. It
                        currently defaults to 5.
  -W SEC, --throttle=SEC
                        Defines the number of seconds a throttle/block will
                        occur for when/if a throttle threshold is reached. It
                        currently defaults to 3.
  -L FILE, --logfile=FILE
                        Send output to the specified logfile instead of
  -D, --debug           Debug Mode

Here is simple example:

# Scan a single directory (recursively) for english subtitles
python -s -f -S /usr/share/TVShows

# Or just omit the (recently) depricated -S switch to achive the same
# results:
python -s -f /usr/share/TVShows

You can scan multiple directories with the following command:

# Scan a single directory (recursively) for english subtitles
python -s -f -S "/usr/share/TVShows, /usr/share/Movies"

# Or just omit the (recently) depricated -S switch to achive the same
# results:
python -s -f /usr/share/TVShows /usr/share/Movies

Another nice feature this tool offers is the ability to expire the need to check certain content over and over again. Considering that most of us keep all our videos in one common location. It would be excessive overkill to poll the internet each and every time for each and every file we have (for subtitles) over and over again. We can assume, that if there are no subtitles for a given video within the last 24 hours of it's existance on our system, then there simply aren't going to be any later. I realize this isn't always the case; but for most situations it will be.

In the above examples, I provided a --force (-f) switch which bypasses this feature. But if you want to set up a cron entry to scan your library on a regular basis, this feature can save you time and effort. A cron could be easily configured to scan your library every hour as so:

# $> crontab -e
0 * * * * /path/to/ -s /usr/share/TVShows /usr/share/Movies

If 24 hours seems to short of a window for you, then just specify the --age (-a) switch and adjust the time to your needs. Remember: it's value is represented in hours.