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September 9, 2023

“Le Coucher de la Mariée” (1896), One of the First Erotic Films Made, Which Featured Actress Louise Willy

Le Coucher de la Mariée or Bedtime for the Bride or The Bridegroom’s Dilemma is a French erotic short film considered to be one of the first erotic films made. The film was first screened in Paris in November 1896, within a year of the first public screening of a projected motion picture. The film was produced by Eugène Pirou and directed by Albert Kirchner under the pseudonym “Léar”.

The original film has been estimated to be around seven minutes long, but it had degraded to a poor condition in the French Film Archives until it was found in 1996. Only two minutes of the film have survived, which includes the undressing sequence.

The film was shot in a theater set, and featured actress Louise Willy who performs the striptease. It is the direct adaptation of a theater show with the same name and the same cast. The show was very popular at the time, at Olympia Theater (Paris). It was a pantomime, quite risqué, but still not explicit as the actress was not nude. However, because only two minutes have survived from the original seven minutes, it is impossible to see more than the striptease.


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