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Tuesday, Nov 16, 2010
by PopMatters Staff
by Matt Zoller Seitz
Salon (12 November 2010)

“On Nov. 12, 1910, a hundred years ago today, a man jumped out of a burning-hot air balloon into the Hudson River while a movie camera rolled. The vast majority of silent films are lost to history—vanished, destroyed or somehow rendered invisible—and this, it would seem, is one of them; I’ve seen the burning balloon gag cited as the first movie stunt on a number of sites, some quite thorough and authoritative, yet none list the film’s title or the name of the stuntman. Photographic evidence of the balloon man’s deed lives on in the Topps bubblegum card pictured here, and his legacy can be seen on any screen that shows moving images.


But what happens when movies change, and stunts become devalued?”


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