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The hardcover edition was released on January 30, , and the paperback edition was released on June 2, With pictures between the book's pages, the book depends as much on its pictures as it does on the words. Selznick himself has described the book as "not exactly a novel, not quite a picture book, not really a graphic novel, or a flip book or a movie, but a combination of all these things".

Selznick decided to add an Automaton to the storyline after reading Gaby Wood 's book Edison's Eve , which tells the story of Edison 's attempt to create a talking wind-up doll. Eventually, when someone re-discovered them, they had been ruined by rainwater. He sold toys from a booth in a Paris railway station, which provides the setting of the story.

In s Paris, young Hugo Cabret and his father repair an automaton at the museum where his father works. When Hugo's father dies in a fire, his uncle brings him to live and work at the train station maintaining the clocks. His uncle disappears, and Hugo keeps the clocks running by himself, living inside the station walls and stealing food from the shops.

He rescues the automaton from the burnt museum in hopes of restoring it. Hugo follows the shopkeeper to his house but fails to retrieve his notebook. A girl in the house named Isabelle promises Hugo she will make sure the notebook is not destroyed. The next day, Hugo returns to the toy booth, where the shopkeeper tells him the notebook has been burnt; he encounters Isabelle, who assures him it is safe. Isabelle brings him to a bookshop to meet her friend Etienne, who sneaks them into the cinema; Papa Georges, the shopkeeper, has forbidden Isabelle from watching films.

Hugo and Isabelle visit the theater but learn Etienne has been fired for sneaking children in, so Isabelle unlocks the door with a bobby pin. They are kicked out, and Hugo is almost caught by the station inspector. Isabelle asks Hugo about his life, but he runs away, fearing that sharing the truth will send him to an orphanage or prison. Isabelle chases him but trips, revealing a heart-shaped key around her neck, which Hugo realizes is the key to the automaton.

The next morning, Hugo learns that Isabelle has read his notebook. He pickpockets the key with a technique learned from Etienne and returns to his hidden room, where he is confronted by Isabelle. They use the key to activate the automaton, which produces a drawing of a rocket shooting a face in the moon.

Believing Hugo has stolen the automaton, she runs home; Hugo follows, and inadvertently crushes his hand in the front door, and she brings him inside. Hugo notices a strangely locked drawer; Isabelle picks it open but drops the heavy box inside, breaking it and her leg. Georges enters and is enraged, ripping up the drawings inside the box.

After Mama Jeanne forces everyone to bed, Hugo takes the key to the toy booth back to the station. The next day, he and Isabelle collect the money from the booth and buy medicine for Georges. Hugo visits the film academy library where Etienne now works. He also created the automaton; excited to learn it has survived, he asks Hugo to bring it to him. Hugo returns to the station, stealing breakfast from Monsieur Frick and Miss Emily as usual; overhearing that his uncle was found dead, Hugo drops the milk bottle and is discovered.

He escapes and fetches the automaton, but is pursued by the station inspector. In the chase, Hugo is almost struck by a train but is pulled back by the inspector, and faints. Hugo awakens in a cell.

He reveals everything to the inspector and is released to be adopted by Georges, Mama Jean, and Isabelle. In the end, it is revealed that Hugo made his own automaton that wrote and drew the entire book of The Invention of Hugo Cabret. The main protagonist of the story, Hugo Cabret, who is only 12, has a great talent for working with mechanical contraptions, especially clockworks. It is mentioned in the book that he could fix almost everything. After moving to the train station after his father died, he became used to stealing food and drinks and other objects from people to survive in the walls train station, even if reluctantly.

He is a smarty pants, a thief and determined, but can also be a little rude due to not having any friends for 2 years of living in the station, until meeting Isabelle. He is described to have dirty and tousled hair. It is also believed that his hair is black due to his depiction in the drawings in the book, but could also be yellow, since the drawings are illustrated in black and white.

He cares deeply about his friend and family, especially his father, who has died. The second main character in the book. Due to the risk of Isabelle knowing that he was a movie maker until he was sent into depression and began working at the toy booth, Melies banished her from permission of going to the cinema.

She still is able to watch the cinema since her friend, Etienne often helps sneak her in, but still is unable to find out about who her uncle actually is, and still doesn't until meeting Hugo. She is described to have large black eyes, and to be slightly taller than Hugo. Georges's parents worked on making shoes and encouraged him to do the same, yet he disliked it.

When he grew into a young man and the movies were invented, he asked the Lumiere brothers, one of the first directors, to sell him a camera, they refused so Melies made his own camera out of his remaining materials from his parent's shoe company. His most famous work, A Trip to the Moon , was the first sci-fi movie ever made.

He was also the director who first began using special effects in movies. Selznick made his personality to be often cold and haughty. In the drawings it is shown that by this point in the book he is in his senior years, and at the beginning of the book he is called 'the old man'.

Hugo's father worked at a museum in Paris when he found the automaton. When there was a fire in the museum, he dies. Hugo is still able to continue his father's work of fixing it with his notebook. There is no mention of a mother at all, and since Hugo left with his uncle to the station, it is assumed that his mother may have died. His automata were kept in a museum in Paris but were later thrown away.

At that time, Selznick began his research on automata and the curator at the Franklin Institute allowed him to study their automaton. The automaton donated to the Institute suffered major damage from a fire. It was believed at the time of donation that it was made by a French inventor named Maelzel. However, after a member of staff fixed it and got it to work, the automaton wrote at the end of a poem in French: "Ecrit par L'Automate de Maillardet" — translated as "Written by the automaton of Maillardet" , revealing its true maker to be Henri Maillardet.

The automaton illustrated in the book has many elements that resemble the automaton at the Institute. Hugo's uncle, who adopted and brought him to work on the clocks at the train station. He is also the reason that Hugo stopped attending school, but Hugo began school again after Georges Melies adopted him.

Claude made Hugo sleep on the floor and yelled at him angrily when he made a mistake with the clocks. He smoked a lot and was an alcoholic, and died when he tripped into and drowned in a river. He was the clock timekeeper at the Paris train station, a task overtaken by Hugo after Claude's death. Isabelle's friend, who often sneaks her into the cinema due to her godparent's refusal.

When he gave Hugo a coin to buy the book that he used for stealing Isabelle's key, he asks Hugo to guess what was behind his eye patch.

Hugo guesses an eye, but Ettienne reveals that he lost his eye as a child when he was playing with fireworks. Hugo gives up on guessing, and so Ettienne takes a coin from behind the eyepatch and gives him it to buy the book. The drawings in the book depicts a young man with smooth hair, a genuine smile and an eyepatch.

He is polite, especially with children, but can also be mischievous, as shown when he is caught sneaking children into the cinema and when he was playing with fireworks.

Used to work at the cinema, but then got fired and worked at the film academy library. The author of The Invention of Dreams and Etienne's master at the film academy.

Like most characters in the book, he enjoys the movies. A huge, probably the biggest, fan of director Georges Melies and was hired as assistant director and editor of his movies. She, in her defense, said that she just thought it was pretty. Like Georges, she is in her elder years. A character who only appears twice in the book, the first time being when she found out that Hugo was stealing her and Monsieur Frick's croissant, and the second time being when she was there when Hugo was in the fugitive cell, and believed that he was telling the truth to the station inspector.

Hugo has been avoiding this character ever since his uncle Claude disappeared. The first sign that the station inspector noticed of irregularity was when the clocks began to be too early and too late, even if just by seconds. That was because Hugo decided to work for Georges and since his right hand's fingers were crushed [ clarification needed ]. The second was when he sent a letter to Claude, asking for an interview with him, but there was no response.

Finally, he decided to go see what was going on, only to have a long chase with Hugo Cabret. He is described as wearing a green uniform and smelling of vegetables. Martin Scorsese bought the screen rights to the book in , and John Logan wrote the script. Scorsese began shooting the film in London at Shepperton Studios in June It was produced in 3D , with its theatrical release on November 23, , and distributed by Paramount Pictures.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the film adaptation of the novel, see Hugo film. Play media. Main article: Hugo film. American Library Association. November 30, Retrieved May 27, Retrieved December 30, The Franklin Institute. March 8, National Book Foundation.


La Invencion de Hugo Cabret

It's at once a picture book, a graphic novel, a rattling good yarn and an engaging celebration of the early days of the cinema. All in black and white. Selznick has always been fascinated by the cinema. As a child in New Jersey he's now 41 he would glow with pride when his surname came up on the screen - the legendary producer of Gone With the Wind and King Kong was his grandfather's first cousin, and "seeing that name always made me feel connected to that world. Movie stills are interspersed with an avalanche of drawings in The Invention of Hugo Cabret , a substantial volume with interlocking themes of secrecy, friendship and survival. Lying on the table stripped of its dust-jacket it is darkly seductive. Open it and it's a multi-layered box of delights.


The Invention of Hugo Cabret

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A subtle world in black and white


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