- List of Western films
This is a list of notable Western films and TV series ordered by year and decade of release. For a long-running TV series, the year is its first in production.
The movie industry began with the work of
Louis Le Princein 1888. Until 1903, films had been "one-reelers", usually lasting 10 to 12 minutes, reflecting the amount of film that could be wound onto a standard reel for projection, hence the term. Edwin S. Porterwas a former projectionist and exhibitor who had taken charge of motion-picture production at Thomas Edison’s company in 1901. He fully realised the potential of motion pictures as an entertainment medium and began making longer films that told a story. As with the films of Georges Méliès, these required multiple shots that could be edited into a narrative sequence.
The most famous work of early cinema, "The Great Train Robbery" is credited with establishing the movies as a "commercial entertainment medium". It was notable for rapid shifts of location, including action on a moving train. Although there had previously been short films that referenced the "Wild West" or paid homage to it, "The Great Train Robbery" marked the birth of the genre. In the 1960s the
Spaghetti Westerngenre grew in popularity. Films such as those of the Dollars trilogyspawned numerous films of the same ilk and often with similar titles, particularly from the mid to late 1960s and early 1970s. See List of Spaghetti Western filmsfor those pictures which were produced in Italy or Spain but depicted the old American West.
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