The new exhibition at the National Library of Scotland tells the story of cinema in Scotland from the first screening in the country, in 1896. This is Scott’s Electric Theatre, opened as a 700-seat venue in 1912. It was demolished 57 years later.
During the 1930s, huge film “palaces” were built – many could hold more than 2,000. The rise of the small screen, during the 1970s, later saw many of them knocked down or put to other uses.
Sir Sean Connery, Kelly Macdonald, Gerard Butler and Deborah Kerr are among those celebrated, as well as Katharine Hepburn, Mel Gibson and silent movie star Mary Pickford, who are among a glitzy cast to have appeared in films about or made in Scotland.
Homegrown collections, films and animations about community life made during the past century are also being showcased. More than 70 films are involved, preserved by the Library’s Scottish Screen Archive.
Gregory’s Girl – made in Scotland in 1981 – is widely regarded as one of the finest British films of all time. Going to the Pictures also takes a look at some of the promising up-and-coming cinematic talent north of the border.