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History of Films

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Essay title: History of Films

Main article: History of film

In the 1860s, mechanisms for producing artificially created, two-dimensional images in motion were demonstrated with devices such as the zoetrope and the praxinoscope. These machines were outgrowths of simple optical devices (such as magic lanterns) and would display sequences of still pictures at sufficient speed for the images on the pictures to appear to be moving, a phenomenon called persistence of vision. Naturally, the images needed to be carefully designed to achieve the desired effect — and the underlying principle became the basis for the development of film animation.

A frame from Roundhay Garden Scene, the world's earliest film, by Louis Le Prince, 1888

With the development of celluloid film for still photography, it became possible to directly capture objects in motion in real time. Early versions of the technology sometimes required a person to look into a viewing machine to see the pictures which were separate paper prints attached to a drum turned by a handcrank. The pictures were shown at a variable speed of about 5 to 10 pictures per second depending on how rapidly the crank was turned. Some of these machines were coin operated. By the 1880s, the development of the motion picture camera allowed the individual component images to be captured and stored on a single reel, and led quickly to the development of a motion picture projector to shine light through the processed and printed film and magnify these "moving picture shows" onto a screen for an entire audience. These reels, so exhibited,

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