September 3, 2016

The Execution of Mary, Queen of Scots (1895) – First Special Effects on Film Ever

The Execution of Mary Stuart is a short film produced in 1895. The film depicts the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots.

The 18-second-long film was produced by Thomas Edison and directed by Alfred Clark and may have been the first film in history to use trained actors, as well as one of the first to use editing for the purposes of special effects.

The film shows a blindfolded Mary (played by Robert Thomae) being led to the execution block. The executioner raises his axe and an edit occurs during which the actress is replaced by a mannequin. The mannequin's head is chopped off and the executioner holds it in the air as the film ends.


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