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VIDEO OF THE DAY: The World’s First-Ever Colour Film Discovered
September 14, 2012
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It turns out the early 1900s weren't all black and white. The earliest colour movie ever shot was discovered recently, and experts say it was created way back in 1902.

The canister of film was discovered in the archives of the National Media Museum in Bradford, UK. It was part of a collection of footage shot by Edward Turner, a little-known pioneer of colour photography. Museum workers found the colour footage after the archive was moved to a new location.

Turner's footage is the earliest known example of a moving colour image, and it was shot a full decade before the invention of Technicolor.

Here's a video from the Telegraph explaining the find.

So how did this early colour film technique work? Turner created his full-colour film by recording successive frames through red, green, and blue filters, then projecting them on top of one another.


The process didn't catch on, though - people thought it was blurry. And Turner didn't get the chance to try again. He died of a heart attack in 1903 at the age of 29.

In 1906, the Kinemacolor system was patented, with the first colour footage showing up three years later. Technicolor followed in 1916.

As for the children who appear in the footage, National Media Museum curators traced Turner's descendants and found out that they are Turner's daughter, Agnes, and sons Alfred and Wilfred. The film was shot in the family's backyard in west London.

The find is causing film historians to look at Edward Turner in a whole new (colourful) light. Paul Goodman, head of collections at the National Media Museum, said "this rewrites film history. Edward Turner is the father of moving colour images."

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