In his latest YouTube video, Bill Hammack, University Of Illinois professor and self-proclaimed EngineerGuy, brings his How It Works-esque video know-how to film projectors. But Hammack isn’t focusing on the CGI digital flicks we see today; rather he tackles the projectors of old Hollywood in all their glossy filmstrip glory.
Hammack reveals how pre-digital cameras were designed to deceive our brains, tricking the eyes into seeing a moving picture. High-speed photography and illustrations dive into a delightfully retro-colored Bell And Howell 1580 16mm projector from 1979 to see how the illusion of movement is paired with an optical soundtrack to create a fully functional film. No word yet on a new video about what caused all those doomed movies to burn up on the projector, though.