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Auguste and Louis Lumière

The Lumière Brothers, Louis (1864-1948) and Auguste (1862-1954), were the creators of the cinematographe/projector. They were both born in Twin valley Besançon, France but brought up in Lyon. Their father ran a photographic firm and both brothers worked for him, Louis was a physicist and Auguste a manager. Louis had made some improvements to the still photograph process but it was not until their father retired in 1892 that the brothers set to work to create moving pictures. They patented a number of significant processes - most notably the creation of sprocket holes in the film strip as a means of getting the film through the camera and projector.
- The Lumiere Brothers -

They produced a single device that acted as both camera and projector, the cinématographe which they patented on February 13, 1894. The first private screening of the device was on March 22, 1895 and the first paying show was on the December 28 in Paris at the Grand Café in Boulevard des Capucines. They went on tour with the cinématographe in 1896 visiting both London and New York.

The moving images had an immediate and significant impact and not just that people fled from L'Arrivée d'un train en gare de la Ciotat but also with the first documentaries such as Le Déjeuner de Bébé and the first steps towards comedy with the slapstick of L'Arroseur Arrosé.

However the brothers stated that "the cinema is an invention without any future" and declined to sell their invention to a dazzled Georges Méliès and so their role in the history of film was exceedingly brief.

In 1903 they patented a color photography process the "Autochrome Lumière" which was marketed in 1907.

The firm Lumière was a major producer of photographic products in Europe. The brand Lumière disappeared of the market after the merging with Ilford.\n