As I “warned” back in April, Ray Zone’s new book Stereoscopic Cinema and the Origins of 3-D Film, 1838-1952 has just been released in illustrated hard cover by the University of Kentucky Press. (It’s also available from various other online book sellers.)
As I said before, this is a significant new work documenting a facet of film history — let alone 3D film history — that to date has been almost completely ignored except for an exceptionally tiny number of academic works and few fragmentary (and often erroneous) passing references.
The publisher’s blurb puts it nicely:
Though it may come as a surprise to both cinema lovers and industry professionals who believe that 3-D film was born in the early 1950s, stereoscopic cinema actually began in 1838, more than 100 years before the 3-D boom in Hollywood….
Stereoscopic Cinema and the Origins of 3-D Film, 1838-1952, is a comprehensive prehistory of the stereoscopic motion picture. …Writing a new chapter in the history of early cinema, Ray Zone not only discusses technological innovation and its cultural context but also examines the aesthetic aspects of stereoscopic cinema in its first century of production.
Run, don’t walk.