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The Lumiere Brothers : Auguste and Louis

Biography | 7-14 yrs | Interactive, Reading Pod

Origin of the Word Cinema

Do you know about the origin of the word ‘cinema’? It is derived from the device called the ‘Cinematographe,’ the world’s first camera cum projector.

First Ever Motion Picture

The Lumiere Brothers – Auguste and Louis, were French inventors. With the help of their invention of the Cinematographe they brought to the public the first ever motion picture, named  La Sortie des ouvriers de l’usine Lumière (Workers leaving the Lumiere factory) in 1895.

Edison had previously invented a peephole kinetoscope; which used to capture motion at 48 frames per second. This was bulky and only one person could view the film at one time. It also made noise.

The Lumiere brothers projected films at a slower rate of 16 frames per second. This helped them use less film and reduce noise.

When people saw their film where a train arrives at La Ciotat station, many from the audience were said to have run out of the theatre, thinking it was a real train!

The brothers were very possessive about their new invention and they only held private screenings of their movies.

First Public Screening of a Film

It was only much later that the brothers had their first public screening at the Grand Cafe in Paris. After the success of this screening the brothers began to open theatres, known as cinemas, to showcase their films. Cinematographe theatres were opened in London, Brussels, Belgium and New York.

Louis Lumiere said, “The cinema is an invention without a future.” The brothers thought that people would soon get bored watching cinema, as they could step out in the street and see the same images as they could see on a screen.

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