ADVENTURES OF WILLIAM TELL (1898)
aka Guillaume Tell et le clown
Article 4020 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Georges Melies
What it is: Comic trick short
A clown keeps trying to build a statue of William Tell only to have it come to life and assault him.
Woe be it to anyone who only reads the English title and expects this one minute short film to have anything to do with the story of William Tell. The French title (which translates as WILLIAM TELL AND THE CLOWN) is much more accurate. The short is fairly amusing, and there’s a lesson to be learned – Never send a clown to do the work of a sculptor. In fact, I would be hard pressed to think of a profession in which it would be appropriate to hire a clown, except, of course, if you’re looking to hire a clown in the first place.