George Melies

George Melies was a French magician, actor, and film director. He was the most prolific filmmaker of the early 20th century, creating dozens of films and innovating the art by utilising at-the-time advanced techniques such as stop edit, dissolve, double exposure, split screen, matting. He also created some of the first colored films, as him and the workers in his studio would manually paint each frame of film. Some films were lost over time, some restored to great quality.

He started by mostly making regular actuality films, but his they eventually gained a theatrical, fantastical, storytelling character. Many of the plots in his latter stories involve the theme of a fantastical voyage (often inspired by Jules Verne) or a deceitful entity entering someone's personal space and disturbing them until they disappear or are cast away by an angel-like character.


Photos: Melies in family photo, "Glasshouse" studio

Still shots: Example of double exposure, La Lune a un metre, L'hallucination de l'alchimiste

GIFs: Iconic Shot from La voyage dans la lune, Color loop of moon shot from La voyage dans la lune


Name Year Orig. translation Translation Length Note Link
Seance de prestidigitation 1896 Conjuring A seance of prestidigitation 5 sec Melies's second film Link
Le cauchemar 1896 Nightmare 1 min Link
Le lune a un metre 1898 The Astronomer's Dream Moon at the Height of a Meter 3 min Link
Un homme de tetes 1898 The Four Troublesome Heads The Leading Man 1 min Link
Le diable au couvent 1899 The Sign of the Cross The Devil in a Convent 3 min Link
Le voyage dans la lune 1902 The Journey to the Moon 13 min most famous film Link
Le voyage au travers l'impossible 1904 The Impossible Voyage The Voyage through the Impossible 20 min Link
Les affiches en gougette 1906 The Hilarious Posters Posters on the Run 3 min Link
L'Alchimiste Parafaragaramus ou la Cornue infernale 1906 The Mysterious Retort An alchemical parafaragaramus, or, The Devilish Retort 1 min Link

Actuality Film