Appendix A

A Short History of the Short Film


The short film played an important part in the development of the modern cinema. From Thomas Edison to George Lucas, filmmakers have depended on the short format to exhibit new technology, advance artistic ideals, or simply catch the eye of the ever-important audience.

It was the audience that first motivated Thomas Alva Edison to commission his assistant, William K. L. Dickson, to begin research in 1889 on a device that would enhance his earlier invention, the phonograph. Photography had become increasingly popular since its inception in the 1860s, and with the invention of rolled celluloid film by George Eastman, the time was right. In 1891, Dickson projected the first motion picture images for ...

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