The animation shows various “firsts,” along with the enumeration of the desired answer—the person/place that is credited with the particular first. In video order, these are:
|Drive-in movie theater||CAMDEN, NJ||1933|
|Woman to swim the English Channel||Gertrude EDERLE||1926|
|Calculation of the circumference of the Earth||ERATOSTHENES||c. 240 BC|
|Person on the cover of People magazine||Mia FARROW||1974|
|(Non-sherpa) to summit Mt. Everest||Sir Edmund HILLARY||1953|
|Musical guest on Saturday Night Live||Janis IAN||1975|
|Person crowned Tsar of Russia||IVAN IV||1547|
|Animal to orbit the Earth||LAIKA||1957|
|Flying trapeze act||Jules LEOTARD||1859|
|Electronic cigarette (inventor of)||Hon LIK||2003|
|State to legalize same-sex marriage||MASSACHUSETTS||2004|
|Novel (author of)||MURASAKI||11th century|
|Parking meters||OKLAHOMA CITY||1935|
Reordering these events chronologically, the first letters spell EMILE COHL FILM.
Emile Cohl created the first animated film, FANTASMAGORIE (which is the answer to this puzzle).