Did You Know?


1.The first full feature animated film, El Apóstol, is a film now lost to time. Produced in 1917 by the Argentine Quirino Cristiani, it was made exclusively with cardboard cutouts. The film was a satire about the Argentine president of the time, Hipólito Yrigoyen, where in an attempt to destroy crime and corruption in Buenos Aires, he ascends to the heavens and tosses thunder bolts to the city, but destroys it in the process. It was well liked by critics and by viewers. Unfortunately, the only copy of the film was destroyed in a fire.


2.There are very few kinetophone sound recordings left from its inception. The kinetophone was the first instrument invented that could record sound and play it back; but also simultaneously record video- and play it back at the same time as the sound. Invented by Thomas Edison in 1894, many samples were recorded despite the price of production. Only three films from this machine exist, and only two of them have sound. You can listen here.

3.The PC release of the infamous video game “Plumbers Don’t Wear Ties” is fortunately lost. Released in 1994, it was advertised as an interactive full motion video game (an impressive feat for the time) for the 3DO console, which was one of the first to use CDs. However, it was more akin to a particularly terrible visual novel. In fact, it remains unanimously one of the most terrible video games of all time. However unbeknownst to all until recent years, it was originally released for PC. However, the only mention of it was on the back of the 3DO box, a review from its day, and a photograph from a blog. Therefore, it is safe to assume it is lost.

4.“The Fall of a Nation” was the first filmed sequel to exist, and is also a lost film. This movie, produced in 1916 was a sequel to the highly successful, but racist, film “Birth of a Nation” released the year earlier. This movie’s concept, being based on a book, was that of a prediction of the future, in which America falls to German invaders due to pacifism. The movie was not received well, and caused the collapse of its producers, Dixon Studios, in 1921. The film was also not well preserved, all that exist of it is a number of stills and the soundtrack which is preserved in the Library of Congress.

5.“The First Men in the Moon” is a lost sci-fi film released in the year 1919. It was based on a book by H.G. Wells with the same name (who also wrote “The War of the Worlds”). The film had received mixed review upon release, when on one hand it had especially crude special effects (even for its time); but on the other hand it was a faithful representation of the original. Before long it fell into obscurity, but is now one of the most sought out films in Britain.

6. PIXAR’s early ads are a set of partially lost advertisements made by the legendary animation studio from 1989 to 1998. In the early days of CGI, when it was still not commercially viable to make them into movies, they made advertisements for a sustainable profit and practiced for the real deal. This made it so that as PIXAR focused more on this commercial market, they would garner a larger profit, gain an audience and attain the skill needed to truly become a legend among animation companies. This lasted until the release of Toy Story, the first fully CGI film to ever be released, which instantly catapulted PIXAR to unseen renown and wealth. With the dissolving of the commercial department, PIXAR forgot about the commercials, and they began to fall into obscurity. Out of the 79 commercials made, 49 are still missing.

7.The original “Black Friday Reel” of the previously mentioned Toy Story is mostly lost. This revolutionary film was originally planned to be adult oriented, by means of dark humor and grimmer characters. The culmination of their efforts surfaced to the executives from Disney, who universally condemned it. This made them nearly cancel the film. Though a part of it was released in a documentary years later, the rest remains in the vaults of Disney. You can watch he released part here.

8.The recording of the death of Renée Hartevelt by Issei Sagawa remains locked in the archives of the Parisian police. Born in 1949, Sagawa was sent by his parents to study in Paris. In the process he lusted for Renée Hartevelt, a Dutch student. Eventually he invited her to read a series of German poems while he recorded her, only to be shot and killed by Sagawa while she was recorded. He then began to eat her over the course of several days, but was eventually found out. Instead of sentencing him for murder, he was institutionalized for a year due to perceived insanity. He then returned to Japan and became a minor celebrity. The entire murder and butchering process was recorded by him, but it is unlikely it will ever be released.

9.The Hindi dubbings of cartoon “He-Man and the Masters of the Universe” are incredibly rare to find. Made and ran from 1983-5, the cartoon was a massive success not just in America, but across the world. It received a dub in a variety of languages, including Portuguese, Spanish, French and Swedish. Among these dubs was the Hindi one, which was just as successful as its counterparts. Despite this, very few recordings of this version still exist. The first 29 episodes can be found in Hindi, out of 140.

10.Cracks was one of the most sought after pieces of media after it aired a mere eleven times in 3 years, the final time being on May 2nd, 1980. Cracks, or Crack Master, was a short airing on Sesame Street. Its short running time and sudden cancellation can possibly be owed to its double-entendre and the context in the short. Due to its memorable nature, a search inevitably began in 2008 when John Armond received the short. However, he was contractually bound to never release any part of it to the public. Thus those who were curious were sent on a search for several years, but to no avail. Miraculously the founder of the Lost Media Wiki, (the username being Dynamite), was mailed an archived version of the short on the Christmas of 2013 by a person using an anonymous mailing service. However, the team that produced the short and the person narration still remain completely unknown.