Fake or real? The Lumière brothers’ “Snowball Fight” from 1896

The Snowball Fight shot by the Lumière Brothers in 1896 is a fascinating little video that recently got restored and went viral. Whenever I see it I want to watch it over and over again. But why is it so special? And is it even real?

00:00 Introduction

01:37 Who shot the snowball fight?

02:01 Where was the fight shot?

02:40 Was the fight spontaneous?

03:48 Fake vs. real

05:36 Conclusion


– Upscaled video by Dmitriy Badin: https://youtu.be/tuFu9-bfnQk 

– La Bataille de Boules de Neiges, Lumière Brothers, 1897

– L’Arroseur Arrosé, Lumière Brothers, 1895

– L’Arrivée d’un train en gare de La Ciotat, Lumière Brothers 1896

– Deepfake video footage: Aayush Bansal, researcher at Carnegie Melon University

– Aerial photo of the Institut Lumière: http://www.institut-lumiere.org/musee…

– ‘Watch This Snowball Fight From 1897 for a Jolt of Pure Joy’, Sam Anderson, New York Times, Nov 5 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/05/ma…


All music licenced by Epidemic Sounds

These Shoes only Go Backwards – Jerry Lacey

Antidote X – Van Sandano

Buster – Jerry Lacey

Portobello Road – David Celeste

Try and Catch us Now – David Celeste


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