While 2012 is being celebrated as the 200th year of Charles Dickens, what is believed to be the oldest Charles Dickens film has been found.

The 1901 movie is one minute long and features one of the oldest characters of Charles Dickens, Joe, from Bleak House.
According to IBN Live, "Bryony Dixon was researching early films of China when she noticed an entry in a catalogue referring to The Death of Poor Joe, which she realised could refer to a character in Dickens' Bleak House."

"It's wonderful to have discovered such a rare and unique film. It looks beautiful and is in excellent condition. This really is the icing on the cake of our current celebration of Dickens on Screen," Bryony Dixon was quoted as saying by the BBC.

The film portrays the character Joe, freezing in a winter snow storm at a churchyard. A watchman sees his plight and comes to his rescue but only to realise it is too late. Joe is seen as praying while he passes away.

The Digital Journal reports that the BFI feels the Dickens' story is similar to Hans Christian Anderson's A Little Match Girl, the story of a girl who died in snow.

According to BBC News, The Death of Poor Joe will be screened as part of the Dickens bicentennial celebrations on 9 March and 23 March at London's BFI Southbank.