Lumiere brothers Louis and Augustele cinematographetrainstation

"The cinema is an invention without a future."
-- Louis Lumiere


Auguste and Louis Lumiere are credited with the world's first public film screening on December 28, 1895. The showing of approximately ten short films lasting only twenty minutes in total was held in the basement lounge of the Grand Cafe on the Boulevard des Capucines in Paris and would be the very first public demonstration of their device they called the Cinematograph which effectively functioned as camera, projector and printer all in one.

front view of Lumiere Cinematographe camera-projector       open side view of Lumiere Cinematographe camera-projector

Le cinematographe - 1985 (front and side views)

Their work consisted mainly of moving images from scenes of everyday life. Ironically as we look back in retrospect in comparison to what film has developed into today, the Lumiere Brothers believed it to be a medium without a future as they suspected that people would bore of images that they could just as easily see by walking out into the street. However, their film sequence of a train pulling into the station reportedly had audiences screaming and ducking for cover as they believed that the train itself was about to plow into the theater.

Born in the Haute-Saone District in 1862 and 1864, with Auguste being the elder, the Lumiere family eventually settled in Lyon. Their father Antoine, opened his own photographic studio and was equally intrigued by this new phenomenon of moving pictures that was slowly developing. Antoine saw to it that his sons recieved a formal education as they attended the largest technical school in Lyon, La Martiniere.

The Lumiere Brothers have been credited with over 1,425 different short films and had even filmed aerial shots years before the very first aiplane would take to the skies.