Get a film school education minus the crippling debt, alcohol addiction, and tendency to become insufferably pretentious at any given moment.

Film is a relatively new medium, with writing, music, and art predating moving image by thousands of years. Whilst there were attempts to fool the eye into thinking it was watching something move, no one really cracked it until the 1800s. The films we watch today, whether you think some of them should exist or not (Adam Sandler films, I'm looking at you), wouldn't be around were it not for the inventors and filmmakers of yesteryear.

With the dawn of the machine age, came capitalism, which despite its faults, gave workers something they had never had before – disposable income. People sought out entertainment, they attended circuses, freak shows, amusements parks, and music halls – but audiences craved for a new form of escapism.

1790 - The Magic Lantern was an early predecessor to the slide projector. Illustrations would be painted on to glass and projected onto the walls of theatres to immerse the audience into a new, and often fantasy, world. Two phase animations were created by including a removable slide which when manipulated would create the illusion of a moving image. What would become a panning shot was mimicked within this format, with extra long slides being fed through the projectors to show various parts of a scene. The magic lantern then became associated with 'Phantasmagoria', which could be considered a predecessor to the modern horror film.

1830 – Joseph Plateau theorises 'The Persistence of Movement', the idea that the eye keeps an afterimage of everything it sees, so when it perceives another image shortly afterwards the illusion of movement is created. Whilst this theory was shortly disproved, it made way for a new way of thinking regarding the creation of the moving image. In 1834, George Horner created the Zoetrope, a revolving drum showing different frames of a moving image, which when spun created a miniature movie.

1872 – When photographing the movement of horses, Eadweard Muybridge discovered that like with the Zoetrope, when multiple shots of movement are placed in succession, the illusion of moving image was created. It was his discovery (and the use of a camera within it) which led to the idea of using frames.

1888 – Widely considered to be the first ever (surviving) film, Louis Le Prince's Traffic Crossing Leeds Bridge shows just that, a short snippet of daily life from the bridge.

1890 – Thomas Edison, responsible for many inventions that we now use on a daily basis, saw an opportunity in filmmaking, and created perforated film stock. This meant that his Kinetograph could quickly move film along in-camera to capture adjacent frames of movement. Thus, the first film camera was born.

1891 - Shortly after, Edison creates the Kinetoscope, a viewing box which allowed one person to view films shot on the Kinetograph. After seeing the success of the moving image, he sets up a filmmaking studio which would continue on through the early years of film.

1895 – Over in France, the excellently named Lumière Brothers were thinking bigger when it came to audiences, and created the Cinematograph, which combined both camera and projector. They also discovered that 16 frames of an image were needed per second in order to replicate natural movement, a number that has been upped to 24 after technological developments.

28th December 1895 – In the basement of the Grand Cafe in Paris, Louis and Auguste Lumière prepare for a moment that will begin a new era in entertainment. They hold the first film screening, showing 10 short films, including the famous Workers Leaving The Factory. Audiences are left exhilarated, and a little terrified by the moving images in front of them, thinking that trains projected onto walls will run them over (Arrival of a Train at La Coitat), not quite able to comprehend the science behind the new technology they have just experienced. The Lumières exploit the success they have in Paris by producing more Cinematographs and sending reps across the world to both spread the word and gather footage of unseen realms.

That is where the story of film as we know it truly gets going...

Recommended Watching -

Traffic Crossing Leeds Bridge – Louis Le Prince – 1888

Workers Leaving The Factory – The Lumière Brothers – 1895

Sortie D'Usine – The Lumière Brothers – 1895

Repas de Bebe – The Lumière Brothers - 1895