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Not blacksmiths but employees of the Edison Manufacturing Company, Charles Kayser, John Ott and another unidentified man are likely the first screen actors in history, and Blacksmith Scene (also known as Blacksmith Scene #1 or Blacksmithing Scene) is thought to be the first film of more than a few feet to be publicly exhibited. The 30-second film was photographed in late April 1893 by Edison's key employee, W.K.L. Dickson, at the new Edison studio in New Jersey.
On May 9, audiences lined up single file at the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences to peer through a viewing machine called a kinetoscope where glowed images of a blacksmith and two helpers forging a piece of iron, but only after they'd first passed around a bottle of beer. A Brooklyn newspaper reported the next day, "It shows living subjects portrayed in a manner to excite wonderment."
Blacksmith Scene was added to the National Film Registry in 1995.
- Dramatization: They weren't actually blacksmiths - they were actors!
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