Alfred James Gee

British exhibitor, cameraman, working in Denmark

The career of A.J. Gee is typical of an adventuresome younger generation that became entranced with the cinema as they entered the workforce and remained dedicated to its charms throughout their lives. Born in Staffordshire, England, by 1897 Gee was the operator of a Robert Paul Theatrograph, and active in the Manchester area. He travelled to Denmark the next year as the operator for Mr Swanborough's 'Wargraph' opening in Copenhagen at Peter Rasmussen's Cirkus Variété on 23 September 1898 and showing films of the Spanish-American war. He returned the next year with films of the Boer War, and settled in Copenhagen in 1900, exhibiting films there and in provincial cities and towns, finally in 1905 founding (with Soren Nielsen) the first permanent cinema in Alborg, the Biografteatret in Nytorv. This grew into a small chain of provincial theatres and a modest distribution company active between 1906 and 1910. Three years later Gee was also involved as a cameraman with small Danish production companies like Det nye danske Films Kompagni, Ltd. and Biorama, also founded by his early partner Nielsen. Continuing as a theatre manager through the 1930s, he retired in Copenhagen and died in 1966 at the age of 88.

Deac Rossell