The Catastrophe of the Balloon "Le Pax"

The Catastrophe of the Balloon "Le Pax" (French: Catastrophe du Ballon 'Le Pax') was a 1902 short silent film directed by Georges Méliès. It was released by Méliès's Star Film Company and is numbered 398 in its catalogues.[1]

The Catastrophe of the Balloon "Le Pax"
Directed byGeorges Méliès
Release date
Augusto Sévéro's Pax Airship, 1902
The dirigible Pax

The film is a recreation of a real-life catastrophe that occurred in Paris on 12 May 1902.[2] At 5 a.m. on that day, the Brazilian inventor Augusto Severo de Albuquerque Maranhão and his mechanic, M. Georges Saché, set off in Severo's dirigible, the Pax. They intended to fly from Paris to Issy-les-Moulineaux. However, while the aeronauts were still over Paris at about 400 meters' altitude, the motor stopped and the dirigible exploded. Both Severo and Saché were killed.[3]

The Catastrophe of the Balloon "Le Pax" is the second-to-last of Méliès's "reconstructed newsreels" (staged re-enactments of current events), made between The Eruption of Mount Pelee and The Coronation of Edward VII.[4] It is currently presumed lost.[1]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Malthête, Jacques; Mannoni, Laurent (2008), L'oeuvre de Georges Méliès, Paris: Éditions de La Martinière, p. 344, ISBN 9782732437323
  2. ^ Malthête & Mannoni 2008, p. 28
  3. ^ Lecornu, Joseph Louis (1903), La navigation aérienne: histoire, documentation et anecdotique, Paris: Nony, pp. 465–467, retrieved 6 December 2014
  4. ^ Rosen, Miriam (1987), "Méliès, Georges", in Wakeman, John (ed.), World Film Directors: Volume I, 1890–1945, New York: The H. W. Wilson Company, p. 755

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