No Wonder the Rental Disc was in Perfect Condition...
Robert Paul is a largely forgotten name today, but he was a major pioneer of British cinema, and was quick to grasp the commercial potential of cinema in ways that better known pioneers such as William Friese-Greene were not. He was more of a mechanic than a filmmaker making, with Birt Acres, his own camera on which to shoot films in 1895, and also Britain's first projector, the Animatograph, with which to screen them in 1896. Early in the 20th century he had a custom-made studio built in Muswell Hill.
Queen Victoria's diamond jubilee celebrations took place in June 1897, and Robert Paul's was one of six crews to film the event, each of them paying large sums of money to secure good positions among the estimated crowd of 3 million onlookers from which to film. Paul released the film as twelve separate titles, each of which were sold for 30 shillings each – about £1.50 today, but a small fortune back then. As this is a film about the Queen, it's a shame that we don't actually get to see her.
The individual titles were: 'Head of Procession including Bluejackets,' 'Royal Carriages Passing Westminster,' 'Cape Mounted riflemen Passing St. Paul's,' 'Royal Carriage Arriving at St. Paul's,' 'Royal Princes in St. Paul's Churchyard,' 'Queen's Carriage and Indian Escort Arriving at St. Paul's' and 'Life Guards and Princes North of St. Paul's.'
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