A Trip to the Moon (1902) Poster


After finishing work on the film, Georges Méliès intended to release it in America and thereby make lots of money. Unfortunately, Thomas A. Edison's film technicians had already secretly made copies of the film, which was shown across the USA within weeks. Melies never made any money from the film's American showings, and went broke several years later (while Edison made a fortune on the film.)
In 2002, a print of the film was discovered in a barn in France. It was amazing in that not only is it the most complete cut of the film, but it was entirely hand-colored. The film was restored and premiered at the Pordenone Silent Film Festival the following year.
One of the earliest known science fiction films. A segment near the end was animated, making this one of the first animated films, too.
It took 3 months to make the entire film.
Although no official credits are included, Georges Méliès left a record in a 1930 letter with cast and crew credits. Ballet girls from the Théâtre du Châtelet portrayed the stars while the Selenites were portrayed by acrobats from the Folies Bergère.
Four years earlier, in 1898, in A Trip to the Moon (1898) Georges Méliès portrays a Medieval astronomer observing the moon through a telescope.
The earliest film listed in '1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die', edited by Steven Schneider.
Part of the movie Hugo (2011) is a largely fictionalized story of the making of this short film.
American rock band Smashing Pumpkins used this film as inspiration for their award winning music video "Tonight Tonight". The ship which sails in at the end of the music video is named Méliès after this films director Georges Méliès.
Jules Verne's novel, "From the Earth to the Moon", served as the source material for the film's plot in a very loose sense.
This film had one of the largest budgets for a short film of its era. Budgetary estimates range from 10,000 to 30,000 francs.
Composed of around 30 scenes (or individual "skits") without any dialog and/or closeups. Melies listed them almost like modern DVD chapters in his Star Films catalog.
Director Georges Méliès worked extensively with former Folies Bergère performer Jeanne d'Alcy during production of this film. She served as the film's costume designer and acted in a small role. The two would ultimately marry one another twenty three years later.
In the color version with music by Air, the garbled speech heard when the Professor is speaking is a recording of Cosmology by Peter Cole played backwards.
The clips from the film is featured in Queen's "Heaven for Everyone" music video.

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Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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