Closing Logo Group
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In Loving Memory of Micheline Charest (1953-2004), cofounder of Cinar.

Background[]

Cinar was founded from offices in New York City by married couple Ronald Weinberg and Micheline Charest on July 20, 1976, as a distribution company which distributed international/foreign films from the 1970s to the early 1980s. In 1984, things were changing for Cinar as the couple moved the company to Montreal, Quebec and began to focus on children's TV programming.

Between 1984 and 2004, Cinar produced a number of successful TV series such as Arthur, Caillou, Are You Afraid of the Dark?, The Adventures of David the Gnome, The Busy World of Richard Scarry, and Zoboomafoo, among others.

In March 2000, an internal audit revealed that the founders invested $122 million (U.S.) into Bahamian bank accounts without approval from the board members. Cinar also paid American screenwriters for work on their shows under the names of Canadian citizens (most notably, Micheline Charest’s sister, Helene, under the pseudonym “Erica Alexandre”), allowing the company to benefit from Canadian and Quebec tax credits for the production of Canadian content. This caused heavy chaos, including a major drop in the stock value and costly lawsuits. In 2001, Weinberg and Charest were each fined $1 million, fired from their executive positions, and barred from overseeing any Canadian company for five years.

In March 2004, the company was bought out by Michael Hirsh after he left Nelvana (owned by Corus Entertainment), who renamed and rebranded it as "Cookie Jar Entertainment" (now an in-name-only unit of "DHX Media", rebranded as "WildBrain"). On April 14, 2004, Charest passed away after complications from plastic surgery.

1st Logo (October 26, 1985-July 5, 2000)[]

Nickname: "Rotating Blue Bars"

Logo: On a dark blue gradient background, a blue line draws in, revealing many bright blue 3D bars interlocking with each other. The bars rotate up and zoom-out, revealing the text:

CiNAR

which consists with the red square on the "i", and the letters "N", "A", and "R" connected together, glittering with stars.

Variants:

  • Sometimes, "A" and "PRODUCTION" (or "PRESENTATION") are shown above and below the logo, respectively.
  • On the first season of Are You Afraid of the Dark? (1992-93), the Cinar logo is in-credit on a black background, bypassing this logo.
  • A 2D still of this logo with "A" above and "PRODUCTION" below was seen on Are You Afraid of the Dark? (1993-94 season, before the 2nd logo was introduced).
  • At the beginning all episodes of David the Gnome, an animated variant of the "PRODUCTION" variant exists, the background is a black-grey gradient,"CINAR" turns upward and the "A" & "PRODUCTION" text wipes in.
  • The logo may be shorter so that it starts fading into the zoom-out.
  • On A Bunch of Munsch, the logo is shortened, beginning with the zooming out, and it fades from the ending sequence from the closing credits. The tail end of the theme plays over it.

FX/SFX: The bars interlocking, the glittering stars.

Music/Sounds: A synth note, then a whoosh, and finally an 8-note theme that sounds like it's on the SNES.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • On most shows, it plays over the ending theme.
  • The David the Gnome variant has a soothing synth-piano theme (similar to both Gino Vannelli's "Hurts to Be in Love" and The Mission's "Butterfly on a Wheel") playing over the opening logo combo.

Availability: Extremely rare.

  • Can be seen on Cinar shows of the period on VHS releases by Golden Book Video, such as Madeline.
  • The musical variant can be found on the Just for Kids VHS release of John the Fearless (At the beginning with the full logo; the end has the full logo with the tail end of the closing theme playing over it) and was found on reruns of Maya the Bee on YTV during the 1990's (Just the glittering part with the 8-note theme). Last seen in the U.S. when Boomerang reran Young Robin Hood.

Editor's Note: This logo is a product of its time for utilizing early computer graphics, although this is saved by the coolness of the animation (kinda resembling the Marvel Productions "CGI Spidey" logo).

2nd Logo (March 9, 1994-June 30, 2004)[]

Nickname: "Cinar in Space"

Logo: On a space background, various glowing line blocks zoom-out from the bottom of the screen, forming a redesigned Cinar logo. Most of the differences are subtle, but the most obvious is that the letters "N", "A", and "R" are separate. The logo flashes and the disclaimer "CINAR is a registered trademark of CINAR Corporation" appears below. Starting in 1996, the URL "www.cinar.com" appears below that (this variant may have plastered the URL-less logos on newer prints of Cinar’s classics).

Variants:

  • Sometimes, there is no byline.
  • Most of the time, the byline is used in different fonts, like on Caillou and Arthur.
  • Starting in 1995, a byline would say: "CINAR is a registered trademark of CINAR Films Inc.".
  • Sometimes in 1998-2004, a byline would say: "CINAR is a registered trademark of CINAR Corporation".
  • A still version of this logo exists on Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Wimzie's House and Zoboomafoo.
  • Another still version with "A" above and "PRODUCTION" below was seen on the second season of Are You Afraid of the Dark?.
  • Some shows/movies such as Mona the Vampire would have the logo shortened to just the flash.
  • A filmed version exists where the red dot on the "I" fades in and the rest proceeds normally, except it has a different flash.
  • A shorter version of the filmed variant exists.
  • An in-credit variant appears on some shows such as Simon in the Land of Chalk Drawings.

FX/SFX: The zooming line blocks, the flash.

Music/Sounds: A whooshing sound with a calm new age synth tune, which is rarely heard.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • It most commonly used the ending theme of the show.
  • On some shows, like Night Hood and The Busy World of Richard Scarry (Except for one VHS promo for the latter), it is silent.

Availability: Rare now, though it was more common during its era of usage. It survives on some pre-2004 Arthur episodes on both DVD and VHS, as most PBS affiliates have now replaced it with a Cookie Jar Entertainment logo.

  • It is also seen at the end of the 1996 television movie Wish Upon a Star. Also seen on early episodes of Caillou. In Canada, this logo remains intact on 1997-2000 episodes on Teletoon.
  • Recent prints of former Cinar shows had this logo plastered with the Cookie Jar logo. It is also preserved on the Time-Life DVD of The Adventures of Paddington Bear, released in 2002.
  • Also seen at the end of The Little Lulu Show.
  • Recent reruns of The Busy World of Richard Scarry kept the Paramount logo, but replaced "A CINAR Presentation" in the in-credit logo with "A COOKIE JAR Presentation". However, both are intact on the 1995 PolyGram Video VHS of The Busy World of Richard Scarry: The Best Birthday Present Ever.
  • In syndicated reruns on PBS Kids and on North American streaming prints of Zoboomafoo, this logo was preserved. However, some international prints and the WildBrain YouTube channel versions of the episodes had the logo plastered with the Cookie Jar logo.
  • The logo had its premiere on The Busy World of Richard Scarry when it aired on Showtime.

3rd Logo (May 1, 1999-2001)[]

Logo: The screen zooms to a dimly-illuminated filmstrip laid on a brown ground, and then the CINAR logo (with a more vivid color scheme than the previous three logos) jumps onto the ground. The screen slowly zooms onto the logo as the same byline from the previous logo appears below.

Variant: A version with the company's URL appearing above the logo instead of the byline exists.

FX/SFX: CGI.

Music/Sounds: Bouncing sounds are heard over the sound of an airplane landing while the logo jumps, and when the logo finishes, there is some babies and animals laughing and cheering, heard over a honk and a harp. For the variant, an ominous, almost metallic whoosh, with a different, smoother “boing” sound for “CiNAR” bouncing in, culminating in a stock “poking” sound effect, which is followed by wind blowing.

Availability: The only known releases to use this logo are the Canadian Sony Wonder DVD release of Caillou: Volume 2 after the Sony Wonder logo, and the Wimzie's House PC games Play Along with Wimzie and A Surprise for Horace.

4th Logo (2000, November 18, 2002-2004)[]

Nickname: "Bland CGI"

Logo: On a variable background, we see the Cinar logo, in white, zooming out on a blue oval, with the same copyright stamp and URL from the previous logo fading-in at the bottom.

Variants:

  • On the last season of Mona the Vampire, the logo is superimposed over a dark sky and a town underneath. The closing theme plays over it.
  • On CBBC UK airings of the final season thereof, the Mona the Vampire variant of this logo is still, and the "www.cinar.com" URL website is also absent, leaving only the Cinar logo, and the same byline.
  • Sometimes, the trademark stamp and URL doesn't appear. This is seen at the beginning of the 2003 Warner Home Video VHS/DVD release of Caillou's Holiday Movie with the rarely heard music.
  • On Zoboomafoo: Playtime and Zobooland games for GBC, the logo is white.

FX/SFX: The CGI logo zooming out. None for the still variant.

Music/Sounds: A whooshing sound followed by a someone (Usually Caillou [From his show]) laughing, which is rarely heard. It still can be found at the beginning of Sony Wonder releases of Cinar shows from the period.

Availability: Extremely rare. After Michael Hirsh acquired Cinar because of their 2001 scandal (as well as debts and losing worth) in 2004, Cinar became kaput. Expect this logo to be replaced with a Cookie Jar or as of 2012 the DHX Media/WildBrain logo these days.

  • This logo was also seen on season 2 of Simon In The Land of Chalk Drawings. Ironically, neither Arthur, Caillou (With the exceptation of Calliou's Holiday Movie), or even Zoboomafoo for that matter used this logo as those shows continued to use the 2nd logo.
  • Mona The Vampire reruns had this logo plastered with the Cookie Jar logo.
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