Competing With Melies: Films by Segundo de Chomon (1902-1912)

by Tornado_Sam | created - 29 Sep 2017 | updated - 13 Dec 2017 | Public

A list of short films by Segundo de Chomon, the rival of Georges Melies. Several of these films are rip-offs while others are inspired by Melies's work. Many of these films are elaborately hand-colored by a stencil-coloring process and they are all available from YouTube.

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1. Danses algériennes 1. Danse des Ouléd-Naïd (1902)

2 min | Short

A short film featuring several dancers from different countries: first an Arabian dancer, then an Algerian belly dancer, and later some Scottish highlanders in kilts doing a Scottish jig. Rendered in hand-color.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 63

This film is another one of those popular dance films from the period, this one of a belly-dancer. Hand-colored.

2. The Spring Fairy (1902)

3 min | Short

A couple invites an old lady at home, after having seen her outside under the snow. The lady turns into a fairy and cast a spell to transform the winter season by spring.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 137

A partially colored trick film, early Chomon.

3. The Magic Table (1903)

Fantasy, Short

A conjurer appears upon the stage with a small ordinary wooden table. Waving his hands, the heads of three men appear in succession upon the surface of the table, the bodies being entirely ... See full summary »

Votes: 9

An rip-off of Melies's "Fantastical Meal" from 1900. The film nearly copies the original Melies and I consider it to be one of Chomon's complete remakes of his rival.

4. Barcelona Park at Twilight (1904)

2 min | Documentary, Short

Segundo de Chomon documents a park in Barcelona, filming its extensive area, filled with trees and some constructions around. The innovation here is that instead of obtaining immobile ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 139

A moving panorama shot documentary, one of several Chomon films about Barcelona. Tinted a light blue.

5. A Dreadful Night (1905)

2 min | Short, Comedy

A soldier attempts to rest at an inn, but his bed plays tricks on him, never giving the poor man a chance to sleep. The inn continues to haunt him until it explodes into a pile of rubble.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 44

An imitation of Melies's usual plot of a traveler at an inn being haunted be apparitions. Hand-colored.

6. King of Dollars (1905)

2 min | Short

A close-up of a magician's hand, in which appear gold coins. The hand drops the coins in a bowl, then a man leans into the picture and proceeds to let more coins tumble out of his mouth. The picture is hand-colored.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 217

A closeup magic act. Hand-colored.

7. The Fantastic Diver (1906)

2 min | Short

A diver dives into a pond. By the use of running the reel backwards, the diver appears to jump out backwards. He does this 10 times total, sometimes doing an elaborate flip, or jumping in with his back towards the camera.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 129

An experiment with running film backwards.

8. Miniature Theatre (1906)

5 min | Animation, Short, Comedy

Three young children set up a table, and on the table is placed a miniature stage. The stage curtain opens, a carpet appears, and then the carpet unrolls by itself. Two puppet figures then ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 174

A stop-motion film, tinted pink.

9. The Rajah's Casket (1906)

8 min | Short, Fantasy

At his palace, the Rajah's casket of jewels is stolen by an evil sorcerer. The Rajah's henchmen go on a search for the valuable casket and find it hidden in a cave, and out of the casket ... See full summary »

Director: Gaston Velle

Votes: 111

A fragment of this early Arabian Nights fairy-tale survives, in some rather sloppy hand-color.

10. The Vacuum Cleaner (1906)

4 min | Short, Comedy

In this funny picture we see the vacuum cleaner, the modern dust eradicator, performing some very droll tricks. As soon as the fellow turns on the air then the fun begins. It is all ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 75

A clever use of substitution splicing.

11. Magic Roses (1906)

3 min | Short

A magician performs a magic show involving women turning into bouquets of roses. Later the roses are festooned together in a fancy way to decorate the stage.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 174

Once mistaken as Melies work. Hand-colored.

12. The Bewitched Shepherd (1906)

5 min | Short, Comedy, Fantasy

A shepherd fights with his wife and storms out of their cottage. Falling asleep he is visited by apparitions who taunt him. Waking up, he regrets the fight and makes up.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 143

A trick film/comedy, partially colored.

13. L'obsession de l'or (1906)


Features a painter in trouble with his landlord. Then, magical dancing safes appear and the painter selects a bag of gold from each, and plays with his money until a fairy appears and ... See full summary »

Directors: Segundo de Chomón, Lucien Nonguet

Votes: 101

An odd, hand-painted little fairy tale from Chomon.

14. A Funny Shave (1906)

2 min | Short, Comedy

A man tries to shave, but his mirror keeps playing tricks on him.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 480

A comedic, hand-tinted short film with hammy acting.

15. Metempsychosis (1907)

3 min | Fantasy, Short

A magic act of transformations. A woman places a bust on a table which comes to life briefly before transforming into dancing midgets and a butterfly whose wings keep changing into a ... See full summary »

Directors: Segundo de Chomón, Ferdinand Zecca

Votes: 70

A transformation magic act. Hand-colored.

16. The Cigar Box (1907)

4 min | Short

Out of a spin-around door on a cylinder-shaped box comes a magician, who proceeds to conjure dancing girls out of the box. At one point he also lights 5 cigars from the box, which magically... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 134

A magic act with dancing ladies. Hand-colored.

17. Music, Forward! (1907)

3 min | Short

"Music Forward!" is the order given by a lady in Colonial costume, and in march a group of five musicians, working industriously at their instruments. The directress stands them in a row, ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Star: Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 135

Clearly inspired by Melies as it uses the gag of heads as music notes. Hand-colored.

18. The Enchanted Pond (1907)


This fragment of a 1907 film is tinted green. It features a maidservant making imps and nymphs appear and disappear.

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Star: Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 87

Tinted green, this is a fragment of a magic act that takes place by a pond.

19. Easter Eggs (1907)

3 min | Short

A woman appears on a stage and conjures up several large eggs. When each egg is opened a dancing midget or midgets is revealed to be inside, and in turn each midget does a brief dance. To end the act the woman turns the eggs into babies.

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Star: Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 160

A magic act with eggs. Hand-colored.

20. Kiri-Kis (1907)

3 min | Short, Comedy, Family

A family troupe of acrobats, made up to appear Japanese, perform various unbelievable stunts in front of the camera, achieved through a trick of the camera.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 470

One of Chomon's most well-known films with acrobats doing amazing impossible stunts. Hand-colored.

21. The Charmer (1907)

5 min | Short

A Brahman stuffs a serpent into a cocoon, and a butterfly woman comes out. She makes more butterflies come out of the same cocoon till a whole crowd of them are swarming the jungle. When ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 92

An obvious rip-off of Melies's "Brahman and the Butterfly" from 1901. Hand-colored.

22. The Red Spectre (1907)

Not Rated | 9 min | Short, Fantasy, Horror

A demonic magician attempts to perform his act in a strange grotto, but is confronted by a Good Spirit who opposes him.

Directors: Segundo de Chomón, Ferdinand Zecca | Star: Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 955

Chomon, like Melies, uses the Devil as the main character in this 1907 trick film. Colored.

23. The Tulips (1907)

4 min | Short, Fantasy

In a bower of giant tulips a boy and girl practice flower magic. They cause flowers and birds to open and human forms to issue therefrom, and on the black background of the wonderful garden... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 151

A trick film with flowery elaborate sets and back-drops. Hand-colored.

24. The Magician from Arabia (1907)

2 min | Short

A sorcerer draws signs on the sand making charming young women.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 116

A hand-colored magic show, simplistic effects.

25. What a Yawn Did (1907)

4 min | Comedy, Short

During his daily promenade, a fine gentleman in his impeccably crisp suit wearing a black and broad-brimmed top hat is yawning incessantly.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 101

A comedy film from Chomon with nearly no effects at all.

26. The Golden Beetle (1907)

Not Rated | 3 min | Short, Fantasy

A sorcerer tosses an iridescent little beetle into a flaming ceremonial cauldron, and much to his amazement, a six-winged fairy in the body of a beautiful young woman emerges. Is his sorcery potent enough to tame her?

Directors: Segundo de Chomón, Ferdinand Zecca

Votes: 785

Hand-colored trick film from Chomon. Can be found on Kino Lorber's "Movies Begin" set.

27. The House of Ghosts (1906)

6 min | Short, Comedy, Fantasy

Three friends go on a trip and decided to rest at an abandoned house. Everything seems pretty normal until really weird things start to happen.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 969

A popular horror film with interesting uses of stop-motion.

28. Modern Sculptors (1908)

5 min | Short

In the middle of a theatre stage, much to our surprise, a modern sculptor's minuscule creations come to life, until the grand finale where an astonishing metamorphosis awaits.

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Stars: Julienne Mathieu, André Deed

Votes: 149

Stop-motion trick film in which clay sculpts itself into statues.

29. Excursion to the Moon (1908)

Not Rated | 7 min | Sci-Fi, Short

Proving adept at every possible camera trick, Segundo de Chomón was brought by Charles Pathé to his studio at Vincennes, near Paris, to make trick films in imitation of Georges Méliès (such as this one, inspired by A TRIP TO THE MOON).

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 326

Chomon's complete rip-off of "A Trip to the Moon." Once this short was indeed mistaken as that film.

30. The Bee and the Rose (1908)

Short, Fantasy

A spider captures the Queen of the Bees.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 82

The first 15 seconds of this film survive in color while the rest is black & white.

31. The Secret Suitcase (1908)

1 min | Short

A fragment of a longer film involving a mysterious suitcase in which two individuals climb into. The suitcase rises into the air spouting smoke and flames.

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Star: Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 9

A fragment of an illusion film. Hand-colored.

32. Whimsical People (1908)

3 min | Short, Comedy

A Pierriette, standing near a crescent moon, snatches five pink suits from the air, and shaking each, it becomes a clown, who seats himself on the moon. In military unison they push their ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 151

An example of Chomon borrowing Melies's ideas to make a completely different kind of film. Hand-colored (colors nearly faded).

33. The Frog (1908)

3 min | Short, Fantasy

From the rocky center of a fountain a fairy emerges, and with a wave of her wand she causes to appear a huge, green bullfrog, which begins to hop around the fountain. Suddenly the rocks ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Star: Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 223

A hand-colored trick film.

34. Magic Bricks (1908)

Not Rated | 3 min | Short, Fantasy

Experimental color film that shows a magician and his assistant making objects and people appear and disappear. Then they stack up some blocks and a moving picture of a little girl appears on them.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 319

A Chinese magic act, hand-colored.

35. Japanese Butterflies (1908)

4 min | Short

A Japanese magician and two boys bring to life a silkscreen of a woman. The woman then gets on a pedestal and the man wraps her in paper. He sets fire to the paper, and she disappears. He ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 131

A hand-colored magic act.

36. The Electric Hotel (1908)

8 min | Animation, Short, Fantasy

An enthusiastic young couple is astounded with modern technology's giant leaps in the fascinating field of electricity.

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Stars: Segundo de Chomón, Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 918

A stop-motion comedy film.

37. Sleeping Beauty (1908)

11 min | Short, Fantasy

A beautiful daughter having been born to the king and queen, the nine most important fairies of the country are called upon to be godmother of the child, and as the ceremony takes place ... See full summary »

Directors: Albert Capellani, Lucien Nonguet | Star: Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 91

An early hand-colored version of the fairy-tale, a lavish production.

38. Diabolical Pickpocket (1908)

4 min | Short, Comedy, Fantasy

A pickpocket in a plaid suit is constantly on the run from the police. He doesn't have any trouble evading the cops, as his magic powers can get him out of the tightest situations. Using ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 118

A clever film using stop tricks and putting them to great use.

39. Unusual Cooking (1908)


A chef comes into the kitchen and throws a lot of rags on the floor: he then casts a spell over them, and immediately they take the form of human beings, and dance a wild saraband around ... See full summary »

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 32

A stop-motion film from Chomon.

40. A Trip to Jupiter (1909)

8 min | Short, Sci-Fi

In a medieval palace, an astronomer with a telescope shows the king.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 217

A lavish hand-colored film, no doubt inspired a bit by Melies's "A Trip to the Moon."

41. A Panicky Picnic (1909)

8 min | Animation, Short, Comedy

On a fine winter morning, an aristocratic couple of city dwellers decide to have a picnic in the great outdoors, however, everything seems to go wrong, all at once.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 199

A stop-motion comedy film from Chomon.

42. An Awful Symphony (1909)

5 min | Short, Comedy

Some shadows in a street wall turned into a bunch of eight crackpots, each of them playing a different musical instrument. Then they changed into several objects like a drum or umbrellas and, finally, they completely disappeared.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 60

A comedic stop-motion film.

43. Her Life for Her Country (1911)

4 min | Short

A short hand-colored film showing different sites from Burgos.

Directors: Giuseppe de Liguoro, Segundo de Chomón | Stars: Maria Brioschi, Giuseppe de Liguoro, Salvatore Papa, Arturo Pirovano

Votes: 58

A hand-colored travelogue film featuring different sites around Barcelona.

44. Gerone, the Venice of Spain (1912)

3 min | Documentary, Short

A Spanish town where boats take the place of taxicabs, as beautiful as the famous Italian city.

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Votes: 84

A documentary about Barcelona.

45. Metamorphoses (1912)

5 min | Short, Comedy

The most famous magician is outdone in this film, for, by the simple means of a wand and an empty glass, toys are transformed into animals, animals into flowers and flowers into a bevy of beautiful girls.

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Star: France Mathieu

Votes: 146

A trick film using elaborate closeups.

46. The Fairy of the Black Rocks (1907)

3 min | Short, Fantasy

An old hag asks a young man to carry a bundle of firewood for her. He refuses; the hag reveals herself to be a witch, and in revenge punishes him with apparitions.

Director: Segundo de Chomón | Star: Julienne Mathieu

Votes: 71

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