Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Anything and everything silent photoplay!
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Kitty
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Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by Kitty » Tue May 16, 2017 7:57 pm

Have you ever wondered why movies were so commonly called "photoplay"? Here is an interesting background on that very subject!
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donnie
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by donnie » Wed May 17, 2017 1:35 pm

I like the term photoplay. It sounds classier than "movie" or "moving picture" and more artistic than "film" or "motion picture."

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Kitty
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by Kitty » Wed May 17, 2017 3:05 pm

Doesn't it? I like it a lot. It's a pleasant word to say out loud, too.
You trying to tell me you didn't hear that shriek? That was something trying to get out of its premature grave, and I don't want to be here when it does. - Phantom of the Paradise (1974)

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donnie
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by donnie » Wed May 17, 2017 3:33 pm

I was thinking that it's a shame the term fell into disuse, but then it occurred to me that Cheech and Chong Up in Smoke would be referred to as a photoplay, and somehow... No. Just no.

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Kitty
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by Kitty » Wed May 17, 2017 8:43 pm

donnie wrote:
Wed May 17, 2017 3:33 pm
I was thinking that it's a shame the term fell into disuse, but then it occurred to me that Cheech and Chong Up in Smoke would be referred to as a photoplay, and somehow... No. Just no.
:lol: :lol: :lol: funniest thing I've heard all day!!

I will tell you that I love those movies, though.
You trying to tell me you didn't hear that shriek? That was something trying to get out of its premature grave, and I don't want to be here when it does. - Phantom of the Paradise (1974)

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dachshundonstilts
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by dachshundonstilts » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:39 pm

The linguist George Kingsley Zipf proposed the idea that more frequently used words tend to get shorter over time. I guess a corollary is that a shorter word for the same commonly-mentioned thing would see more frequent use. That may be what doomed "photoplay," given the availability of "film" and "movie."

I'm intrigued, though, by that phrase "picture theater." That's a new one on me.
"I feel so low, old chap, that I could get on stilts and walk under a dachshund." - Monty, "It" (1927)

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Kitty
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by Kitty » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:43 pm

dachshundonstilts wrote:
Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:39 pm
I'm intrigued, though, by that phrase "picture theater." That's a new one on me.
That's a nice one, I agree! I don't know if I'd heard it before, either. It makes it sound like you're going to something much more grand.
You trying to tell me you didn't hear that shriek? That was something trying to get out of its premature grave, and I don't want to be here when it does. - Phantom of the Paradise (1974)

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dachshundonstilts
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by dachshundonstilts » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:52 pm

The term "talkies" is one I'm glad didn't last very long. I assume there were two reasons it didn't; the rapid disappearance of silent pictures and the basically unappealing sound of the word "talkie." It's a homophone of "talky," and who wants to see a photoplay that's talky?
"I feel so low, old chap, that I could get on stilts and walk under a dachshund." - Monty, "It" (1927)

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Kitty
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by Kitty » Thu Sep 07, 2017 3:13 pm

Those are interesting thoughts. I like to use it quaintly. 😃
You trying to tell me you didn't hear that shriek? That was something trying to get out of its premature grave, and I don't want to be here when it does. - Phantom of the Paradise (1974)

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dachshundonstilts
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Re: Who Coined the Term Photoplay?

Post by dachshundonstilts » Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:33 am

Yeah, I do sometimes wish people would use it occasionally as in "Let's go to the talkies." I don't actually like to see any word completely die out.
"I feel so low, old chap, that I could get on stilts and walk under a dachshund." - Monty, "It" (1927)

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