G.B.I. Instructional Films

G. B. I. Instructional Films

In the 1930s, the Secrets team were involved in two parallel projects. Transferring to Gaumont-British Instructional, they produced a new series of popular films under the title Secrets of Life, while a series of more specialist classroom films were prepared under the supervision of a team of consulting scientists, including Julian Huxley, E. J. Salisbury and H. R. Hewer. A list of these films is found below, based on a G.B.I. pamphlet. This list covers only those films relating to natural history and biology, which G.B.I specialised in, but the company had a much wider remit, releasing instructional films on topics including ‘Domestic Science’, ‘Geography’ and ‘Physical Education’, as well as producing documentary films intended for the theatrical market. To learn more about G.B.I., read this excellent overview on the Colonial Film website. These films are yet to be digitized, although the BFI National Archive holds copies of many of them.

Botany (These films were supervised by E. J. Salisbury)

TitleYear
Roots1934
The Cabbage1934
How Plants Feed1934
Pollination1937
Seed Dispersal1938
The Fern1938
The Dandelion1938
Climbing Plants1938
Self Defence by Plants1936
The Life Cycle of a Plant1934
Hydra, images printed in Cine-Biology (1941), by Durden, Field and Smith.

Zoology (These films were supervised by Julian Huxley and H. R. Hewer. Most were directed by J. V. Durden)

TitleYear
The Amoeba1934
Paramecium1937
Hydra1936
Obelia1936
Coelenterata1937
Fasciola1938
The Earthworm1936
Annelid Worms1936
Astacus (The Crayfish)1940
Crustacea1940
Arachnida1940
Onychorphora & Myriapoda?
The Tortoiseshell Butterfly1936
The Blowfly1935
Heredity in Animals1937
Heredity in Man1937
From Generation to Generation1937
Stills from The Sea Urchin (1936). Printed in Cine-Biology (1941), by Durden, Field and Smith.

Embryology

TitleYear
The Sea Urchin1936
The Development of the Trout1938
The Frog (A Life History)1936
The Development of the Chick1937
Marine Sand Animals1936
Animals of the Rocky Shore1937
Interdependence of Pond Life1936

Ecology (Directed by Margaret Thomson, supervised by Madeline Munro). Each film also released in separate reels (with accompanying titles like ‘Flora’, ‘Fauna’ or ‘Geology’).

TitleYear
Moorlands1937
Downlands1938
Woodlands1937
Heathlands1938

Natural History

TitleYear
White Flies and Tomatoes1934
Looper Caterpillars1935
The Emperor Moth1940
Wood Ants1936
The Life-cycle of the Saw-fly1936
Facts About Fish1937
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