Jack and the Beanstalk


Part I | Part II | Part III

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Jack and the Beanstalk
Copyright: Thomas A. Edison; 20June1902; H19221.
Duration: 4:13 (part 1), 4:25 (part 2), and 1:28 (part 3) at 16 fps.
Director and camera: Edwin S. Porter.
Cast: Thomas White (Jack).

From Edison Films catalog, no. 135, Sept. 1902: "A grand spectacular performance in nine scenes and one tableau, illustrating the most popular fairy story ever written.... From this very simple and popular fairy tale we have produced a most pleasing, interesting and mirth producing play in motion pictures, introducing therein many surprising new tricks and dissolving effects. The subject was carefully studied, and every scene posed with a view to following as closely as possible the accepted version of Jack and the Beanstalk. We have, for the purpose of producing comedy (which in reality is the life of any animated picture play), in some instances departed slightly from the story, in that we have burlesqued a few of the features; as, for instance, where the butcher trades the hatful of beans with Jack for his mother's cow, we have introduced a burlesque animal made up of two men covered over with the head, horns and hide of a cow. This animal goes through many ludicrous antics, such as kicking, jig dancing, sitting down with legs crossed, etc., and finally, after strenuous efforts on the part of the butcher, suffers herself to be led away.

Scene 1 -- Trading the cow.

Scene 2 -- Jack returns with the beans.

Scene 3 -- Growing of the beanstalk.

Scene 4 -- Jack's dream.

Scene 5 -- Climbing the beanstalk. [end of part 1]


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Scene 6 -- Jack above the clouds.

Scene 7 -- Arrival at the top of the beanstalk.

Scene 8 -- The giant's kitchen. [end of part 2]


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Scene 9 -- Jack descending the beanstalk and death of the giant.

Closing tableau -- A most beautiful scene, showing Jack and his mother seated in the fairy's boat, which is drawn by three beautiful swans, proceeding on their way to the castle which is to be their future home. The good fairy is seen to be flying through the air, guiding Jack and his mother on their way." (p. 116-118)


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