Back at the dawn of movies, trailers were actually shown at the end of the films, hence the name. The first movie trailer was shown at Rye Beach, New York in 1912. Today, however we play them at the beginning before the film starts to rope us in and get us excited to see even more movies.
The film industry has tried to change out the word “trailer” and insert other names like “previews” or “previews of coming attractions”, but for some reason “trailer” just sticks and has remained the preferred term in the film industry.
Early trailers, when shown after the film, were used for several purposes. They were not shown just to entice movie goers to return to watch another movie. They served the purpose of cuing patrons to leave the theater and allow it to be cleaned up and ready for the next crowd.
What's your favorite movie trailer? Let us know in the comments!