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Film 1880 - 1920 (TV Y1)


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Film 1880 - 1920 (TV Y1)

  1. 1. The Beginnings • The 1880s was a time of advancement, invention and enterprise in the world of moving images • Several factions from around‘View from the window at Le Gras’ the globe were working oncirca 1828 new and innovative type of technology which attempted to capture and project moving images • Until this time, photography had been the sole method of recording actual ‘real life’‘Boulevard du Temple’ 1839
  2. 2. Thomas Edison• Thomas Edison patented the caveat for the Kinetoscope in 1888 stating that it would ‘do for the eye what the phonograph does for the ear’• He charged on of his assistants, photography expert William Kennedy Laurie Dickson, with the task of inventing the Kinetoscope• By 1891, after a couple of prototypes had been made and tested, the Kinetograph (the camera) and the Kinetoscope had been patented• The 1891 patent used 35mm film which, until recently was still widely used today
  3. 3. The Kinetoscope • 18 in. x 27 in. x 4 ft. high • peephole with magnifying lenses in the top • Inside the box the film, in a continuous band of approximately 50 feet, was arranged around a series of spools. • A large, electrically driven sprocket wheel at the top of the box engaged corresponding sprocket holes punched in the edges of the film, which was thus drawn under the lens at a continuous rate. • Beneath the film was an electric lamp, and between the lamp and the film a revolving shutter with a narrow slit. • As each frame passed under the lens, the shutter permitted a flash of light so brief that the frame appeared to be frozen. • This rapid series of apparently still frames appeared, thanks to the persistence of vision phenomenon, as a moving image.
  4. 4. The Lumiere Brothers • Father, Antoine was a photographer and successful businessman • In 1984, Antione was invited to a demonstration of Edison’s Peephole Kinetoscope in Paris • He presented his son Louis with a piece of Kinetoscope film, given to him by one of Edison’s concessionaires and said, "This is what you have to make, because Edison sells this at crazy prices and the concessionaires are trying to make films here inAugustine and Louis Lumiere France to have them cheaper”.
  5. 5. The Lumiere Brothers cont… • Through 1894, attempts were made to replicate and improve Edison’s Kinetoscope design • They considered Edison’s Kinetograph flawed because it was too bulky and was resigned to the studio • And they thought Kinetoscope was limited as only one person could view the moving images at any one point • In1895, the Lumiere Brothers painted the lighter (5kg) andAugustine and Louis Lumiere quieter Cinematograph
  6. 6. In England… • The first single lens motion picture camera was patented in Leeds, by French-born Louis Aime Augustin Le Prince in 1888 • The first films were made on a sensitised paper roll a little over 2 inches wide • Prince started commercial development of his motion picture camera in early 1890 with an updated version • He arranged for a demonstration to M. Mobisson, the Secretary of the Paris OperaLous Aime Augustin LePrince
  7. 7. In England…• On September 16 1890, Prince boarded a train at Dijon bound for Paris with his motion picture camera and films• He never arrived in Paris. No trace of Prince or his motion picture camera were ever found. The mystery was never solved…• However, the first moving pictures developed on celluloid film were made in Hyde Park in 1889 by William Friese Greene, a British inventor, who patented the process William Friese Greene in 1890
  8. 8. In England…• In 1895, a pair of Greek showmen, George Georgiades and his partner George Tragides, were at the centre of a row with the already powerful American Edison company• The pair originally purchased six Kinetoscopes from Edison, forming the American Kinetoscope Company and opened Kinetoscopes at several locations in London, amongst them The Strand and Old Broad Street• They wanted to expand but machinery was rare and expensive• The Greek pair decided to make their own version with the help of R. W. Paul who owned an optical instrument works• Edison did not have a patented for his Kinetoscope in the UK…
  9. 9. In England…• Once the pirate Kinetoscopes were made, Edison refused to sell films for Paul’s machines, so Paul approached Birt Acres to help construct a camera to shoot their own films• They obtained film from the American Celluloid Co. of Newark, N.J. and started filming their own with American born cinema pioneer Birt Acres as the cameraman• Over the next few years, William Friese-Green, undertook extensive research and advanced the creation of British cameras• Unfortunately his technology was not successfully incorporated into any practical application• Friese-Greens most bitter opponent was ex-hypnotist, mind reader and showman George Albert Smith
  10. 10. In England… • Smith is thought by many to be the real driving force behind the early cinema industry • In 1892, Smith acquired the lease to St Anns Well Garden in Hove, Brighton and turned it into a pleasure garden • The garden became his ‘film factory and is the scene of many early films • In 1897 Smith turned the gardens pump house into a space for developing and printing and in the grounds, probably in 1899, he built a glasshouse film studioGeorge Albert Smith
  11. 11. Lower-class Entertainment• Once a reliable form of projection was discovered, establishments began showing early films, such as The Great Train Robbery (1903)• These were mostly converted shop fronts called Nickelodeons• So called because admission was 5c (a nickel)• In its inaugural years, film was seen as a entertainment for the lower classes, for those who couldn’t afford to watch stage plays• Only failed stage actors would star in film and they remained anonymous
  12. 12. D.W. Griffith • Kentucky born DW Griffith was a failed stage actor who start acting in Edison Film Company films in 1907 • Started directing in 1908 after a member of staff called in sick • He made 60 films in 1908 • In 1909, he made over 100 • Who do you think was the most important person on aD.W. Griffith set at this time?
  13. 13. Edison’s Cartel • In 1908 Edison attempted to exploit his filmic invention by charging companies per foot of film • Anyone suspected of exhibiting a non-Edison production had their equipment smashed • Biograph Pictures, started by William Dickson, whoWilliam Dickson actually invented the Kineoscope paid Edison for the right to make films
  14. 14. From NY To Hollywood • Many of the smaller companies suffered at the hands of Edison’s financial demands • They were also having equipment broke by Edison’s ‘trust member’ for not forwarding him any funds • So, en mass, several directors headed a safe distance away, pitching up in South California • DW Griffith was one of the first directors to head over to Hollywood
  15. 15. Mary Pickford • At this time very few actors or actresses were known by name • However, Mary Pickford who worked wth Griffith at Edison Film co. became increasingly popular • She was known simply as the Biograph girl • After a row with Biograph she went to Independent Moving Picture where her name was on all promo and shown in everyMary Pickford film
  16. 16. The Early Business Model • By the Early 1900s, several European Jewish immigrants, including Carl Lemmle, began to foresee the money available in the film industry • Adolf Zukor also emigrated from Europe (Hungary) and would eventually become head of Paramount Pictures • Zukor injected a level of quality in film, which until the early 1900s had been see as a low form of entertainment • This is perhaps the point when film began to be considered as a seriousAdolf Zucor art form
  17. 17. Mack Sennett Studios • Mack Sennett open a studio in 1912 that was entirely dedicated to the production of comedy • They produced around 2 – 3 silent comedies a week • Mack Sennett stole most of his comedic ideas from a French company called Pathe • Charlie Chaplin, after being seen by Mack Sennett as a stand up comedian, began his long filmic career at Sennett’s Keystone Studios
  18. 18. • Pathe was established by the Pathe brothers in 1986• Initially, they focused on manufacturing film and production equipment• They invented the newsreel in 1908• They bought the Lumiere’s patent in 1902 and began attempting to create their own improved studio camera• They had very efficient distribution systems and set up production and distribution systems in the UK in 1902• This would eventually have a detramental effect on the British Film industry as mostly Pathe films were being shown
  19. 19. Griffiths vs. Cecil B DeMilles The Race To Feature Length • By 1914, European studios such as Pathe were creating films over an hour long • Cecil B DeMilles had also produced Americas first feature length film, The Squaw Man (1914), which came in at about 80 minutes long • At the same time, Biograph were restricting DW Griffith to short, 12 minute-long films • ‘One reelers’ could be made cheeply and make a large profit • DW Griffth eventually made Judith of Bethulia (1914), without telling Biograph
  20. 20. WWI• The outbreak of war allowed the American film industry to prosper• The British industry in particular almost ground to a halt• Because the British industry was on its knees, American companies came over and set up distribution centres here• This combined with years of Pathe domination further inhibited the British industry
  21. 21. The Birth of a Nation (1915) • DW Griffith directed The Birth of a Nation in 1915 • This three-hour long epic focused on the civil war • Screenings were accompanied by 35-piece orchestras • Broke Box Office records • After the film, the Klan had something of a social awakening • Does this show the power of film? • Can you think of another film that has caused these types of issues?
  22. 22. The Early Studios Paramount • Established as Distribution company in 1914; acquired by Zukor in 1917, who merges it with his production company • First “vertically integrated” company • Marlene Dietrich, Mary Pickford, Bing Crosby
  23. 23. Biblical Epics and Glamour • Many of the directors and technicians in the early days of Paramount were Austrian and German exiles. Because of this the studio’s films had a “European look,” being full of dramatic lighting and elaborate set designs. • One of Paramount’s main directors was Cecil B. DeMille, who, along with D. W. Griffith, invented the Biblical Epic. If you close your eyes and try to imagine different stories from the Bible or from ancient mythology, you will probably picture the films of DeMille.
  24. 24. Fox (Later 20th Century Fox • Established in 1913 by William Fox • Known for musicals and westerns • John Ford, Shirley Temple, Marlon Brando, Marilyn Monroe
  25. 25. 20th Centuary Fox and the Blockbuster • William Fox founded Fox Studios in 1914 and began building his empire by buying up chains of movie theatres. This coincided with a production strategy that emphasized big spectacle. • Fox had early success with this strategy with such films as Seventh Heaven (1926) and What Price Glory (1926). Both films were box-office hits, but Fox soon found himself locked into this format, as he needed to continue to gamble with big budgets films to offset production cost and the company’s real estate holdings.
  26. 26. Vertical Integration• Vertical integration is a method of producing films which one company control the entire process from start to finish• This included production, distribution and exhibition• This allowed studios to keep a tight control on their product• Vertical integration has several pro and cons – think of a couple…
  27. 27. Vertical Integration PROS CONS• Lower transaction costs • Higher coordination cost• Lower uncertainty • Staff not motivated• Supply and demand • Lack of creativity• Monopolisation • Monopolisation
  28. 28. Vertical Integration PROS CONS• Lower transaction costs • Higher coordination cost• Lower uncertainty • Staff not motivated• Supply and demand • Lack of creativity• Monopolisation • Monopolisation