By Andre Gaudreault
On the flip of the 20th century, cinema used to be quick constructing itself as a sound kind of renowned entertainment.The essays in American Cinema 1890-1909 discover and outline how the making of movies flowered into an that will ultimately develop into the critical leisure establishment of the area. starting with all of the early varieties of photos that moved, this quantity tells the tale of the discovery and consolidation of many of the techniques that gave upward thrust to what we now name cinema. by means of analyzing the battles over patents, creation, exhibition, and the reception of movie, readers find out how going to the films turned a social culture in American society. during those twenty years, cinema succeeded either in constructing itself between different leisure and tutorial media and in updating quite a few different types of spectacle.
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Extra info for American Cinema 1890-1909: Themes and Variations (The Screen Decades Series)
The proposal came from the Chicago Central Phonograph Company, one of the largest and most 26 PAUL C . SPEHR inﬂuential branches of the North American Phonograph Company, the Edison-dominated organization that controlled North American rights to Edison’s Phonograph and Alexander Graham Bell’s Graphophone. The Chicago company was managed by Tom Lombard, who was also the acting head of the North American Phonograph Company. He had ﬁnancial backing from Erastus Benson, a wealthy banker from Omaha who was also an ofﬁcer of North American Phonograph.
Cinema emerged in the ﬁrst decade of the twentieth century. And it is precisely this phenomenon—the gradual emergence, the advent over time, of this new “cultural formation”—that the chapters 10 ANDRÉ GAUDREAULT AND TOM GUNNING in this book discuss: this twenty-year period, and the process it gave rise to, by which cinema developed and was legitimized. Between 1890 and 1909 lies a period during which there reigned what we once described as a “cinema of attractions,”2 whose tenets and products have little in common with those of the later, dominant forms of cinema, apart from the fact that both paradigms are based on the use of moving images.
But ﬁlms could be longer when the subject demanded. Thus, early in our period longer ﬁlms were made of Passion Plays and prize ﬁghts, although programs of shorter ﬁlms grouped together were more frequent. Vaudeville shows tended to favor topical subjects (such as the ﬁlms of the Spanish-American War described by Patrick Loughney in the 1898–1899 chapter). However, after the initial novelty period, a number of ﬁctional genres became popular. Trick ﬁlms, often in versions that featured applied color, were especially popular among the vaudeville patrons, particularly those made by French producer Georges Méliès such as A Trip to the Moon (1902) or Fairyland (1903).
American Cinema 1890-1909: Themes and Variations (The Screen Decades Series) by Andre Gaudreault