Film, the Past, and Posterity
After reading H. G. Wells’ The Time Machine in Autumn 1895, Paul lodged a provisional patent for a theatrical entertainment that would simulate travelling through time, and the two young men met to discuss its feasibility. Although this was never developed, its conception lodged Paul in the popular history of cinema published by Terry Ramsaye in 1926; and Wells would incorporate film into several of his early scientific romances, notably The Sleeper Awakes (1899). During 1897, Paul took stock of the potential of animated photography, copywriting some of his films, and offering samples of his work to the British Museum and seeking investment in a public company, both without success. However, the year brought a major commercial success with the filming of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee procession through London, recorded by Paul and many other companies, thus providing a record of the event for distant audiences and for posterity.
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