Tuesday, January 7, 2014

What was the first Horror Film?

Le Manoir de Diable also known as House of the Devil and The Haunted Castle (1896) made by Georges Melies in France is considered by film historians to be the first horror movie. Méliès, a magician turned filmmaker, is most noted for producing the first science fiction film, A Trip to the Moon (1902) which was based loosely on Jules Verne's From the Earth to the Moon and H. G. Wells' The First Men in the Moon. Méliès is also credited for being one of the first filmmakers to use, time-lapse photography, multiple exposures, dissolves, and hand-painted color.

House of the Devil (1896) contains many of the elements that would later be used in other horror films including skeletons, ghosts, witches, and a large flying bat which flies into a medieval castle at the beginning of the movie. The bat changes into Mephistopheles (played by Georges Méliès) who then produces a colander and an assistant. The bat transformation has led some to proclaim the  House of the Devil (1896) as the first vampire film.

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