The history of horror films: Early films

February 24, 2023

Early film cameras were first produced in the late 1880s by inventors such as Louis Le Prince and Thomas Edison. Though early projection technology was extremely limited, advancements made over the next decade eventually made films more accessible and available to the general public. The revolutionary discoveries attracted the attention of thousands of interested people. Theaters and studios found they did not even need to create feature stories, as audiences would flock to see simple images move on the screen. Once this thrill wore off, however, filmmakers realized they would need to do more to attract viewers bored of watching repetitive gags.

Le Manoir du Diable (The House of the Devil), a three-minute short released in 1896, is widely regarded as the first-ever horror film. Other subsequent horror films were typically adaptations of popular literary horror works, many of which were adapted multiple times.

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