The Hindoo Fakir (1902)
"Hindoo Fakir" is said to be the first film ever made about India, and depicts the stage act of an Indian magician who makes his assistant disappear and reappear, put in a box and pierced with a sword, and as a butterfly emerging from a flower.
From the Edison Catalog:
A remarkable and mystifying picture, showing a Hindoo Fakir going through a series of tricks. He produces a lovely woman by simply waving his hand in the air. He then sticks four swords in the platform and lays the woman at full length upon their upright handles, and then with a fifth sword, he knocks the four from under her and they mysteriously disappear, but the woman stays in her original position, apparently suspended in mid-air with nothing but the atmosphere as a support. A set of butterfly wings seems to grow on her shoulders, and she flies about the stage in a most mysterious manner and then fades away in space.
Source: Edison Catalog
Nowadays we could laugh at the simple tricks in a film like this, but back in the day when the film medium was new, these kinds of films were an attraction. In this film, about a Hindoo fakir performing tricks the added element of the far east makes it even more interesting to watch. The film is pretty well produced.