We can trace the history of filmmaking back to the 1890s. Motion pictures were initially considered a novelty, a peep show booth at a fair. Technology in film moved fast, and within 20 years, filmmakers figured out how to edit scenes together to make a comprehensible story and properly light a set. By 1926 motion pictures were already using sound. There are so many cool firsts in film history that are often overlooked.
This film firsts list is not just a technical account of the history of cinema. It's a combination of movie history firsts and cool firsts. When was the first time a cellphone was used? When was virtual reality first introduced on the silver screen? Movies have always been one step ahead of history, breaking down walls and tearing down stereotypes. The first cinematic interracial kiss came in 1957, 10 years before Loving v. Virginia legalized interracial marriage nationwide. Hollywood was sending characters to the moon in 1902, decades before NASA.
Tropes are also on this list of film firsts. What was the first film to use body-swapping as a plotline? You know, like when an uptight father doesn’t understand his son and the son doesn’t get why his dad is such a grump all the time, so they switch places in order to see what it’s like to live in the other person’s shoes. What about the nerdy girl makeover trope? A mousy gal with glasses, a bad haircut, and no sense of style suddenly becomes totally gorgeous with a few makeover tips and contact lenses.Read about those Hollywood firsts in film and more. Also, make your voice heard. Be sure to vote up the coolest movie history firsts.
Actors: Steven Spielberg, Richard Dreyfuss, Roy Scheider, Robert Shaw, John Searle, + more
Initial Release: 1975
Directed by: Steven Spielberg
#40 on The Most Rewatchable Movies
#6 on The Best '70s Movies
Actors: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles, Penn Jillette, Annie Potts, + more
Initial Release: 1995
Directed by: John Lasseter
#28 on The Most Rewatchable Movies
#24 on The Funniest '90s Movies
Actors: Mel Gibson, Gary Busey, Danny Glover, Joan Severance, Darlene Love, + more
Initial Release: 1987
Directed by: Richard Donner
#3 on The Best Movies of 1987
Actors: Dustin Hoffman, Jon Voight, Bob Balaban, M. Emmet Walsh, Brenda Vaccaro, + more
Initial Release: 1969
Directed by: John Schlesinger
#17 on The Best Movies of the '60s