Last month I was in London for a conference and I was able to visit the Sherlock Holmes Museum at 221b Baker Street. It's very hard, when you visit this lovely little museum, to remember that Sherlock Holmes is a fictional character. The study is ready for his return, evidence from various cases are strewn about. The upper rooms have wax figures depicting scenes from various stories. It's definitely a must-see for Holmes fans.
And here is another must-see: The Cinémathèque Française has recently found a long-lost Sherlock Holmes film made in 1916 by Essanay Studios, starring the great actor William Gillette.
A blogger who identifies themselves only as PW1949 has been posted very erudite and carefully researched blogs on everything to do with the 19th Arrondissement in Paris. This includes the Buttes Chaumont area where the Gaumont Studios were.
If you can read French, I highly recommend visiting this blog. Even if you can't, the pictures and maps are great.
Why write about Buster Keaton in a blog dedicated to early cinema and Alice Guy? Because Herbert Blaché, Alice's husband, directed a few films in Hollywood before the transition to sound, and one of them was The Saphead, the first feature film starring Buster Keaton.
One thing that is true of all early cinema, silent cinema, and early talkies: without preservation and conservation, the films eventually disintegrate. That's if we even know where they are to begin with.
But every now and then a treasure thought long lost is found again.
Hélène Février has written an article about Alice Guy for TV5Monde. It's a great article, and includes links to some of her most important films. What's most important about this article is that it is written in French, as France and French scholars by and large have proved that the old saying about prophets being rejected in their own country is absolutely true of France.