The First Movie Trailer was shown in 1912. Or 1913.



I love movie trailers. I love the hints and promises that they give. It is one form of advertising that I love.
I am particularly excited about two trailers.

Despicable Me 2 and Iron Man 3.

Did you know that they are called “trailers” because they used to be shown at the end of the film? A quote from Paramount executive Lou Harris¬†explains:

“The first trailer was screened at Rye Beach, a New York-area amusement park, in 1912. ¬†One of the concessions hung up a white sheet and showed the serial “The Adventures of Kathlyn.” At the end of the reel Kathlyn was thrown in the lion’s den. After this “trailed” a piece of film asking Does she escape the lion’s pit? See next week’s thrilling chapter! Hence, the word “trailer,” an advertisement for a coming picture.”

Of course other sources claim the first trailer was shown in 1913 to advertise a Broadway play.

If you take the time to analyze trailers you find they all usually have a 3 part structure. From Wikipedia:

“They start with a beginning (act 1) that lays out the premise of the story. The middle (act 2) drives the story further and usually ends with a dramatic climax. Act 3 usually features a strong piece of “signature music” (either a recognizable song or a powerful, sweeping orchestral piece). This last act often consists of a visual montage of powerful and emotional moments of the film and may also contain a cast run if there are noteworthy stars that could help sell the movie.”

After watching a ton of trailers (I had to do lots of “research” for this post) I found that trailers are still the best form of advertising out there.

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