On 1 March 1896, a small crowd gathered in the telegraph room of La Quotidien newspaper located at Galeries St Hubert 7 in Brussels. Here they sat down to watch seven short films made by the brothers August and Louis Lumière.
The films had already been shown in Paris the previous year in the basement of a grand cafe. This was the first public screening in Europe of the new motion picture technology, marking a landmark in the history of cinema.
The Brussels screening followed just a few months later. It was the first stop on a tour of Europe. A plaque was put up outside the former newspaper office in 1996 to mark the centenary of that first film screening.
Derek Blyth’s hidden secret of the day: Derek Blyth is the author of the bestselling “The 500 Hidden Secrets of Belgium”. He picks out one of his favourite hidden secrets for The Brussels Times every day.