The day the cinema was created – level 3


In 1891, Thomas Edison constructed the first version of a camera. It was able to shoot films, but only one person could see them in a special machine. It wasn’t possible to project them on a screen yet. Edison considered his invention so insignificant that he didn’t pay $150 for an international patent.

This enabled the Lumière brothers to be inspired by his idea and improved it. They created a camera that could shoot and project new films.

On March 22, 1895, people could watch the first private performance in Paris. It was a 45-second film showing workers leaving a factory. The audience was amazed.

The Lumière brothers then began making short documentaries about people’s lives. Then they held public performances. People could come and see them for admission of one franc.

Only 35 people came to the first public performance. However, they left completely fascinated. In a single week, the interest in these short films was so huge that the performances were held even 20 times a day, and the profits climbed up to 2,500 francs.

Despite this initial success, the Lumière brothers didn’t believe that the camera would be of great use in the future. They focused their work more on color photography. Little did they know that their invention would create a film industry and film would become an art.

Difficult words: shoot (to make a film), insignificant (not so important), amazed (very surprised), admission (what you pay for cinema or theatre or other performances).

What impact did the invention of Thomas Edison have on the film industry that followed?


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