Populist

Mountain to Moon: 10 Movie Studio Logos and the Stories Behind Them

As another Oscar season ramps up, TIME uncovers the stories behind some iconic Hollywood logos

  • Share
  • Read Later
40 comments
WakAnamjem
WakAnamjem

ARE YOU INTERESTED SPIELBERG TYPE OF SCRIPT WITH UNIQUE ANIMATION ? CONTACT ME ..

Jim Allen
Jim Allen

At the end of the Columbia film "Strait Jacket", the Joan Crawford thriller about an ax murderess, the Columbia lady's head has been removed. How novel.

Fatesrider
Fatesrider

Frankly, I thought the choice for a Paramount's imaginative use of a studio logo from Indiana Jones was a poor choice.  A FAR better one was from Eddie Murphy's "Coming to America"   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

Sandeepmdas
Sandeepmdas

RKO, Mandalay, New Line Cinema, Touchstone, Tristar, Miramax, Pixar, Carolco ?

Steve032
Steve032

MGM- or Metro Goldwyn and Mayer - how about even a blurb about the name?

Lazy article.

cryofpaine
cryofpaine

Actually the constellation orion does have the 8th star that they show, depending on which definition of it you want to use. The star's name is Meissa. If you want the full constellation, there's also a bow (or lion) and raised arm with a club.

rcart
rcart

Long live the iconic RKO Radio Tower; bee bee beep, bee bee bee,, bee bee beep

rcart
rcart

Thumbs up for the most iconic studio logo ever!  Long live RKO Radio Pictures!

Glinys Cabral
Glinys Cabral

make money online, go to   cb4fun  DOT  com

rcart
rcart

I agree with blueseasons; one of my favorite and the most iconic studio logo had to be the radiating tower on top of the earth; RKO, I loved that logo.

dexdan
dexdan

Aree with Of this world. The correct title should be, "Brief studio histories and descriptions of their logos."  I did not read a single story of how the logo was created.

JenBooth21
JenBooth21

Evelyn Venable was the model for the Columbia Pictures logo, not a homemaker.  She appeared in several films during the 30s and 40s.  She was the voice of the Blue Fairy in Pinochio.  I remember reading that she was the model for that logo when I her obit appeared in a magazine, it could have been Time, back in 1993.  I never forgot it.

JenBooth21
JenBooth21

Evelyn Venable, an actress who appeared in film in the 30s and 40s, was the model for the Columbia Pictures logo, not a homemaker.  I read this when I saw Evelyn's obit way back in 1993 and never forgot it.  She was the voice of the Blue Fairy in Pinochio too.

Richard Bergstrom
Richard Bergstrom

I loved Condorman.

I also remember Disney refusing to let their movies be allowed on videotape for a long time, so the only way to see Snow White, etc was for a re-release to hit the theaters.

GFrancesDaly
GFrancesDaly

Too bad yet this, ANother writer, does not have an understanding of the english language yet continues to be employed.  Blows my noodle.

Allan_Smithee
Allan_Smithee

Columbia logo, lady draped in  . . .' an American flag (1936-1876)' ??? what did they do, film the Civil War?

Jhera35
Jhera35

Dreamworks - it's a kid and not a man.

DetroitMark
DetroitMark

RE DISNEY:

   Not true.  The Disney logo up until the Magic Kingdom Castle was the appearance of Tinkerbell, a quick circle around center screen, and a splash of magic fairy dust that burst the picture into the feature.

   That may not have been intended as a logo, but like a business' "brand" ... some things are determined not by focus groups or CEO's bloviating about such things, but rather by public perception.

Terry Dubay
Terry Dubay

Surprised they didn't mention the Dreamworks logo from the Jurassic Park series.. in which the kid is yanked off the moon by a hungry raptor.  I always liked that one.

Of_this_World
Of_this_World

I thought this was a story on how they came up with the logo and or the history of the logo this just appears to be a bunch of pictures of studio logos with a breif bio of the studio. i suggest changing the title to Movie studio Logog's and 2 sentence bio. or write the story to fit the title.

RichardSRussell
RichardSRussell

With due respect to Fox's fanfare, and regardless of the visuals, for audio nobody beats the Disney intro's theme song.

 

I always thot the Paramount lady looked like Annette Bening.

 

Warner Brothers has their standard blue-and-gold logo, but the versions I remember best are the dark ones kicking off the Harry Potter and Batman movies.

 

I remember the Universal globe going under right at the beginning of Waterworld even better than Indy walking in front of the Paramount mountain.

 

DreamWorks is kind of jerkish for disabling the video of their logo. What's their problem?

 

Would anyone have taken MGM seriously if their lion had been named Clyde?

 

Nobody in 2012 remembers the Liberty Bell logo any more, nor is it represented here, but you can find a reminder of its general wonderfulness on TV every holiday season.

 

I expect Time's entertainment editors could do a follow-up on production-company logos. Pixar's bouncing desk lamp would make a great lead-off entry.

jmissinne16mm
jmissinne16mm

@Jim Allen 

Columbia probably poked more fun at their logo than any other studio.  In "The Mouse That Roared," a mouse scared her off her pedestal; in "The 3 Stooges In Orbit,"  she was launched as a missile; in "Cat Ballou" she turned into a pistol-packin' Jane Fonda (animated, I think, by Hanna-Barbera); "Thank God It's Friday" had her animated again and doing the disco hustle; and at the end of William Castle's "Zotz!" she greeted the audience with "Zotz all, folks!"

Fatesrider
Fatesrider

I'll agree that RKO should have been included except for one fact:  Unlike all the others it doesn't have a continuous history. 

It was dissolved as a studio in 1959.  The trademark still exists today, but it's license is owned by Universal.  This is JUST a trademark arrangement.  It's not the same studio and produced nothing between 1959 and 1990.

The others are pretty much newcomers who weren't around 50 years ago when all of the ones included in the list were.  Mandalay (1995),  New Line Cinema (1967), Touchstone (1984), Tristar (1982), Miramax (1979), Pixar (Starting as Graphics Group under Lucasfilm in 1979) and Carolco (about 1972-1973).

Besides, the headline only says 10 studios.  It doesn't say top 10 studios or the most relevant studios today.  It's just likely the 10 longest-lived studios whose logos have changed or been used in unusual ways over the years.

Tom Greensfelder
Tom Greensfelder

 Yes, that's true... and I heard it from her personally. She was my professor of Ancient Greek for 4 quarters at UCLA back in the late 60s! Her name was then Evelyn Mohr.

meccano
meccano

Tinkerbell was used for the Wonderful World of Disney television show in it's various incarnations (going all the way back to the original "Disneyland" title) not for theatrical motion pictures.  

The studio used the stylized Buena Vista Distribution logo for earlier films, but not a logo for Walt Disney (Productions).  While the studio started to using the Walt Disney castle logo in the mid 80's, it didn't actually change the name Buena Vista Distribution to Walt Disney Motion Pictures Group until 2002.  The modern computer animated castle logo used today originally had "Walt Disney" underneath the castle, but more recently change that to merely say "Disney."  

LeonelAdam
LeonelAdam

Connie replied I can't believe that a student able to profit $4959 in 4 weeks on the network. did you read this (Click on menu Home)

JohnEvans
JohnEvans

 Judy answered I am blown away that a single mom able to make $6280 in one month on the network. have you seen this(Click on menu Home)

Nostra
Nostra

It's quite hard to find out more about the history (I've written a similar article a while ago), for some it is known, but for others that knowledge has been lost it seems which is unfortunate.

TwilightNewsSite
TwilightNewsSite

Yes, the Columbia logo was thought to be based on Annette Bening; the likeness is uncannily similar.  And, since she was at the top of the world at the time, it was also obvious.  She talked about it around the time and was, as I recall, quite gracious about it.

Later, the angry artist claimed that the model was a housewife, which was later clarified, that the face was a "computer composite" of several (women's) features.  So it would seem (highly) likely that Bening was included in the composite at some level or another (as in, enormously), and wasn't ever paid for the privilege.

Nostra
Nostra

I missed that one as well, although the logo didn't go through many different versions. I'm still planning on writing about this one myself (did a similar series a while ago)