Closing Logo Group
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Background[]

Universal Pictures is an American film studio and distributor. The word "Universal" means "Omnipresent". It was originally formed on April 30, 1912 by Carl Laemmle, a German-Jewish immigrant who settled in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, where he managed a clothing store. In 1915, he opened Universal Studios. In 1946, Universal merged with International Pictures, headed by Leo Spitz and William Goetz. This team ran Universal-International, while Nate Blumberg and J. Cheever Cowdin remained at the helm of Universal Pictures, the parent company. Universal-International destroyed its remaining silent film copies in 1948. In late 1951, Universal-International was acquired by Decca Records. In 1962, Music Corporation of America (MCA) purchased Decca Records and with it, Universal-International Pictures, leaving Milton Rackmil and Edward Muhl in charge, while Dr. Jules Stein (Board Chairman) and Lew Wasserman (President) guiding MCA. As a result of a consent decree with the justice department, MCA divested itself of its talent agency business. In 1990, MCA/Universal was acquired by Panasonic Corporation and later sold to Seagram and Sons in 1995. On December 9, 1996, MCA was reincorporated and renamed as "Universal Studios". In December 2000, French company Vivendi acquired Universal Studios from Seagram and Sons and formed Vivendi Universal Entertainment. On May 11, 2004, it was part-owned by Vivendi SA (20%) and General Electric (80%) and became a subsidiary of NBC Universal, Inc. On January 26, 2011, Vivendi S.A. sold the remaining 20% of NBC Universal to GE until January 28, when Comcast Corporation acquired a 51% controlling interest of the renamed NBCUniversal, LLC, and the remaining stock (49%) from GE on March 19, 2013.

Universal is one of the world's first major film studios, alongside Gaumont Film Company, Pathé, Titanus, Nordisk Film and Nikkatsu, and the very first major film studio in Hollywood. Currently, its logos are credited at the end of every film that was produced by Universal.

1st Logo (1913?-1918?)[]

Nicknames: "Saturn Globe", "Cheesy Globe", "Earth Globe"

Logo: A sepia rotating model globe with "UNIVERSAL FILMS" on a space background with "Made in USA" logo on two bottom corners.

Variants:

  • There is a green version of the logo.
  • There is a black and white version of this logo.
  • There is a variant where "UNIVERSAL FILMS" is not superimposed over the globe but rather a model. The text is also placed in a lower position than normal. The globe and space background also looks different. The "Made in USA" logo is also gone. The globe animation is also improved as well.
  • There is a variant where the logo looks drawn in a black background. The "Made in USA" logo and the stars are gone. A plate with the text "NESTOR" or "SPECIAL" has been added along with the trademark text under the plate. Sometimes, the text "NATIONAL BOARD OF CENSORS" is added under the globe.

FX/SFX: Just the globe rotating at a fast pace.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Ultra rare. So far, this is known to appear on The Hedge Between, The Girl Ranchers, The Ohio Flood or The Heart of Humanity.

Editor's Note: A good effort for the 1910s, though with choppy animation. The company would use the globe on all of their future logos.

2nd Logo (July 22, 1914-1919)[]

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Nicknames: "Trans-Atlantic Globe", "Saturn Globe II", "Trans-Atlantic Saturn Globe"

Logo: We see a circle with "UNIVERSAL" written above and "FILMS" written below. Inside the circle is some small text that says "TRADE MARK". A Saturn-like ring surrounds the circle, which reads "THE TRANS-ATLANTIC FILM CO. LTD." (Universal's British distributor at the time).

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: The closing theme of the movie. Otherwise, it uses a violin theme.

Availability: Ultra rare. Because most of their silent films of this time were destroyed, while some went into public domain and have recreated titles replacing the Universal references, this and the previous logo are hard to find. A few silent films, however, have turned up with their original credits and this logo intact, so look hard for this one. It last appeared on a silent film aired on TCM's Silent Sunday Nights. However, it can be found on the film By the Sun's Rays.

3rd Logo (August 23, 1920-January 11, 1922)[]

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Nicknames: "Saturn Globe III", "Print Saturn Globe"

Logo: We see a checkered background with a Saturn-like globe with the words "UNIVERSAL FILMS" on it. "UNIVERSAL" is shown above the globe in a stencil-like font. "FILM MANUFACTURING COMPANY", "PACIFIC COAST STUDIO", and "Universal City, Cal." are shown below, in different fonts (and the first line in an upward arc).

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Ultra rare. It appears on silent films on TCM's Silent Sunday Nights.

4th Logo (September 2, 1923-1927?)[]

Nicknames: "Saturn Globe IV", "Cheesy Globe II", "Airplane Passing Globe", "Biplane", "Earth Globe II"

Logo: Against some dark clouds, we see a biplane flying around a rotating globe counterclockwise, leaving a trail of smoke behind it, which form the words "UNIVERSAL PICTURES".

Variant: A more zoomed out version in a sepia tone color was used on some films.

FX/SFX: The plane rotating around the globe, the forming of the name.

Music/Sounds: None. 

Availability: Ultra rare. It currently appears on some 1920's Universal films on TCM's Silent Sunday Nights. It has been seen on The Cat and The Canary.

Editor's Note: Given the fact that the first picture of the Earth from space was not taken until 1967, the globe in the logo is inaccurate. Madagascar is three times larger then in real life, and Japan and the Philippines are missing. The globe also incorrectly spins to the left instead of to the right.

5th Logo (January 18, 1925-1927?)[]

Nicknames: "Carl Laemmle Globe", "The Almost Invisible Globe II", "Cheesy Globe III", "Eerie Organ Face", "Creepy Carl Laemmle"

Logo: On a dark cloudy background, we see a globe slowly rotating as a smiling Carl Laemmle can be seen within the middle. Below are the words "Carl Laemmle" in a script font and "P R E S E N T S" below it.

Variants:

  • On a black background, we see a globe on the top left with Carl Laemmle smiling in the middle whilst the globe is rotating at a normal pace. On the bottom right hand corner we see "Carl Laemmle" in a script font like the normal logo and says "Presents" below it.
  • Another variant has the rotating globe but with the "CARL LAMMMLE" text in a capitalized font.

Closing Variant (Smouldering Fires): On a black background it says "It's a Universal Picture", with "Universal" in a cursive font.

FX/SFX: The globe rotating.

Music/Sounds: An organ theme for the normal logo whilst for the variant it has a descending orchestra which could be an opening to the movie. On both prints of the film it would be normally silent like the original film.

Availability: Like most early Universal logos, extremely rare. The main logo can be seen on Smouldering Fires, and the variant can be seen on Head Winds.

Editor's Note: This is an unusual Universal logo, as it is the only one where the globe is not the focal point. The globe is barely visible, mostly due to the very grainy film quality and Carl Laemmle's face over it. Can be rather unnerving to some viewers.

6th Logo (September 9, 1927-September 17, 1936)[]

Nicknames: "Airplane Passing Globe II", "Biplane II", "Cheesy Globe IV" "Golden Age Globe"

Logo: On a cloud-like background, an earth globe rotates. No clouds are visible on the globe. As the globe rotates, a biplane flies around it, with "A UNIVERSAL PICTURE" being wiped in diagonally as the biplane passes the globe.

Trivia: The biplane is a Lockheed 8C Sirius.

Variants:

  • The position of the globe varies per movie.
  • The logo was cropped to 1.85 for Universal's 75th Anniversary logo in 1990. However, full screen prints of the logo retains the full aspect ratio.

Closing Variants:

  • The words "THE END" are seen superimposed over the globe and the sky is darker. Then, seconds later, "IT'S A UNIVERSAL PICTURE" fades in.
  • Another closing variant exists where the globe is at the bottom right corner rotating. On the top it says "The End" in a cursive font. "It's a Universal Picture" (also in cursive) is superimposed over the globe. A ray of light also shines down on the globe. On some films, the text is on the bottom left corner. Starting around 1933, the text is in a Broadway font.
  • On short films, instead of the text saying "It's a Universal Picture", the text is replaced with "It's a Universal Short".
  • On cartoons, it says "It's a Universal Cartoon" in a script font.

FX/SFX: The biplane, wiping on of letters, and the globe. The biplane and globe are both models.

Music/Sounds: Just the sound of the biplane's engine.

Availability: Very rare. Can be seen on films of this era.

  • This logo can sometimes be seen after later Universal logos on certain movies.
  • The earlier DVD releases of Frankenstein and Dracula have plastered this with the B&W variation of the 1997 logo, while the later VHS releases of the films plaster this with the B&W variation of the 1963 logo.
  • Their earlier video releases do not use a logo at all, though it can be seen on the alternate opening for the former on its 2005 Special Edition DVD and the 2012 DVD & Blu-ray of the two aforementioned titles.
  • This is also seen on Bride of Frankenstein, including its 1984 MCA Home Video VHS release.
  • It appears on TCM's print and the Criterion and Universal DVD releases of My Man Godfrey, although several public domain prints of the film have the logo removed entirely. It was also restored for the Criterion Blu-ray and DVD of the 1936 version of Show Boat, which has since wound up with Warner Bros.
  • It surprisingly appears on a cable print of The Texan, a 1930 Paramount film (although Universal does own the rights to the film).

Editor's Note: This is an impressive logo for its era and a favorite of many. Alongside the next logo, it was often reused by Universal on some films later on as a throwback.

7th Logo (May 11, 1936-December 15, 1947)[]

Nicknames: "The Art-Deco Globe", "Rotating Letters", "Cheesy Globe V", "Cheesy Universal" "Golden Age Globe II"

Logo: A stylized glass globe is seen, tilted at an angle. Around the globe, the words "A UNIVERSAL PICTURE" rotate, in a stylized 1930's font. Stylized five-point stars (a la the stars on the Paramount logo) surround the globe.

Variants:

  • On color releases, the logo is tinted blue.
  • On the colorized versions of the Universal Sherlock Holmes movies, the letters are gold colored.
  • Like the previous logo, this logo was also cropped to 1.85 for Universal's 75th anniversary logo in 1990. The full screen version retains the full aspect ratio.
  • A Spanish-language version exists, with the text now reading "PELICULA UNIVERSAL."

Closing Variant: Superimposed on a special background or in the last seconds of a movie, we see the words "The End" with lettering that varies on the movie along with the text "A Universal Picture" or "A Universal Release".

FX/SFX: The stars, globe, and rotating letters, done in live action, which looks pretty impressive for its time.

Music/Sounds: A proud, bombastic orchestral fanfare, composed by Jimmy McHugh.

Music/Sound Variants:

  • Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid uses a remix of the tune.
  • From about 1945 onwards, the opening theme of the movie was used instead of the fanfare.

Availability: Rare. Can be seen on Universal releases of the era.

  • This doesn't show up that often on TV since the movies it appears on don't air as often as newer movies (so you might have to look on home releases), but Svengoolie on Me-TV happens to be one of the best sources of this logo (and other older logos from other movie companies).
  • It also often shows-up on Johnny Mack Brown films from the time period on Starz Encore Westerns.
  • The last regular appearance of this logo was on the Woody Woodpecker cartoon "Woody the Giant Killer."
  • It also showed up on a Screenpix Westerns airing of Destry Rides Again on August 27, 2021.
  • Strangely, this logo appears on the 4K UHD release of Holiday Inn, preceding the film's Paramount logo.
  • It is unknown if this appears on any prints of the 1943 version of The Phantom of the Opera.

Editor's Note: A stylish logo for the time, and another impressive feat from the era.

8th Logo (August 28, 1946-May 8, 1964)[]

Nicknames: "Rotating ('40s) Globe", "Cheesy Globe VI", "50s Globe", "Earth Globe IV"

Logo: On a space background, a model globe (harkening back to the 2nd logo; still no clouds though), rotates. Superimposed onto the globe are the words "Universal International" (in white for B&W films or yellow-orange for color films) in a italic Roman font with "U" and "I" bigger than the rest of the letters, symbolizing Universal's merger with International Pictures.

Byline: Later on, the credit "EDWARD MUHL, IN CHARGE OF PRODUCTION" would appear in the lower-left corner.

Variants:

  • There are widescreen and color versions of the logo.
  • CinemaScope films have the starfield looking more different and the company name is larger and more stretched. This also appears in some films shot in 1.85:1 flat ratio.
  • In Germany, the chyroned extra text "IM UNIVERSAL FILMVERLEIH INC" in white circles around the globe. This exists in both B&W and color.

Closing Variant: Same as above, but the text is "A Universal-International Picture".

FX/SFX: The rotating globe. Compared to the previous logos, the model animation used in here is actually pretty nice.

Music/Sounds: None or the opening theme of the film. However, on some films such as The Egg and I and The Naked City, the bell theme from the International Pictures logo is used.

Availability: Uncommon. Again, seen on Universal International releases of the period.

  • Likely debuted on The Killers (1946) and last appeared on Nightmare.
  • Sometimes, the 1997 logo would precede it on later releases of movies from the period (like the DVD release of To Kill a Mockingbird).
  • It is preserved on the Magnetic Video release of Blood of the Vampire.
  • It appeared on original prints of Horror of Dracula (released as simply Dracula in the UK), but video releases either remove it or plaster it with the Warner Bros. "Shield of Staleness". However, the 2018 Warner Archive Blu-ray restores this.
  • It can also be seen on all releases of Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie at the beginning of This Island Earth as Mike, Tom Servo and Crow enter the theater.
  • The CinemaScope variant, aside from films shot in CinemaScope, can be also seen on US prints of King Kong vs. Godzilla.

Editor's Note: The longevity of this logo, with 18 years in use, made this a very iconic one.

9th Logo (December 5, 1963-May 18, 1990)[]

Nicknames: "Zooming Globe", "Gaseous Globe", "Famous Globe", "MCA Globe", "Zooming MCA Globe", "Classic Globe", "Earth Globe V"

Logo: We zoom through space, and a pair of Van Allen radiation belts start to form. The rotating earth globe appears in the distance, and as we get closer to it, the word ""UNIVERSAL", in a bold, planetary font (named Futura Bold), fades in close-up to us and zooms out to a comfortable distance. When the word and the globe are in position, the byline "AN MCA COMPANY", fades in below it, in a bold yellow font (named Eurostile Bold). Two Van Allen belts surround the globe.

Trivia:

  • The logo was animated and designed by Universal Title and Optical (commonly known as "Universal Title"), who was also responsible for the animation for the Universal Television logos, and handled all of the titles and optical effects for all Universal films and television series until 1990. The globe was hand painted on a rubber ball by Eyvind Earle, who also did the space background and the Van Allen belts as well.
  • On international prints of The Wizard, this logo didn’t get plastered over by the Carolco logo. Instead, the logo plays as normal with its music and would then be followed by the film's opening with the Universal logo blacked out.

Variants: Many main renditions of this logo have been discovered. This is going to get complicated, so let's explain this simply:

  • 1963-1973: "A UNIVERSAL PICTURE/RELEASE", with the "UNIVERSAL" text sandwiched between "A" and "PICTURE" or "RELEASE".
    • A credit for Edward Muhl, the then-head of Universal, can be seen on the lower-left of the first movies to feature this logo.
    • On some films, "PRESENTS" is underneath the "UNIVERSAL" text. Sometimes, "UNIVERSAL PRESENTS" starts blurred, but becomes clearer as the globe zooms in fast. This variant is seen on movies like Secret Ceremony, The Killers (1964), Two-Lane Blacktop and the original release of American Graffiti.
    • Sometimes, only the "UNIVERSAL" text is seen. This can be found on Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here, The Hired Hand, The Day of the Jackal, The Red Pony, among others.
    • This can also be seen on newer movies that use this logo for a retro effect, with or without an additional Comcast byline.
  • 1971-1990: The byline "AN MCA COMPANY", in a yellow Eurostile Bold font, appears below the "UNIVERSAL" text. The Scope variant has it in a different font.
    • On American Graffiti starting with its 1978 re-release, "PRESENTS" is seen underneath the byline in a smaller font.
    • On most films from 1989-1990, the MCA byline has more of a red-orange tone to it. The Van Allen belts also have a more purple tone to them. This can be found on Parenthood, Uncle Buck, Field of Dreams, the VHS release of Born on the Fourth of July, Opportunity Knocks, Coupe De Ville (which was a co-production with Morgan Creek), Bird on a Wire, and the theatrical trailers for Back to the Future Part III and Problem Child (both of which used the next logo on the films themselves). A clip of this variant would later be used for the next logo's 75th Anniversary variant.
    • There is an end-title variation that contains the word "RELEASE" below the MCA byline. This was used to plaster the Paramount logo on 1980s reissue prints of Alfred Hitchcock films owned by Hitchcock himself (including Rear Window and 1956's The Man Who Knew Too Much).
  • "Scope": Shown in a wide ratio of 2.20:1 or 2.35:1 widescreen, the globe appears to zoom in rather slowly, and the "UNIVERSAL" text is blurred when it fades in, becoming clearer as it zooms out. The logo is much wider than usual, to accommodate the extra space. This is seen on films shot in this format such as High Plains Drifter, The Sugarland Express, Jaws, The Car, Halloween II and III, John Carpenter's The Thing, Scarface, Firestarter, The Dark Crystal, The Last Starfighter, Dune, Legend, Prince of Darkness, They Live and Born on the Fourth of July.
    • A sepia-tone variant can be found on The Deer Hunter.
    • A variant exists where the flat version is cropped to 2.35. This can be found on Coupe De Ville, Bird on a Wire and Jaws: The Revenge. However, the GoodTimes DVD of the latter uses the regular scope variant.
  • "Flat": Presented in 1.14:1 open matte for 35mm uncropped film scan prints, 1.37:1 academy or 1.85:1 "matted" widescreen, the logo appears to move somewhat faster than the scope version. The "UNIVERSAL" text is not blurred and simply fades in. Seen on films such as Coogan's Bluff, Duel, Charley Varrick, The Sentinel, National Lampoon's Animal House, The Jerk, Little Miss Marker, Coal Miner's Daughter, Somewhere in Time, An American Werewolf in London, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Cat People, Videodrome, Monty Python's The Meaning of Life, Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Back to the Future I and II, Weird Science, Brazil, Out of Africa, An American Tail and The Land Before Time.
    • In an earlier variant, used in tandem with the normal version, "A UNIVERSAL PICTURE" starts blurred, but becomes clearer, along with the Edward Muhl byline. The globe zooms in faster in this variant, used on movies like Shenandoah, Send Me No Flowers, Charade and Father Goose. A B&W version of this variant can also be seen on Kitten with a Whip, which was featured on an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000 (with the logo intact).
    • In this variant's early years, a small registered trademark "®" symbol is seen below the "L" in "UNIVERSAL," which faded in alongside the zooming text. By 1975, Universal added a larger symbol in the same position, fading in after the text zooms out. However, the smaller symbol can still be clearly seen behind the bigger one.
    • It was also the default pan-and-scan version of the logo and plastered the scope variant on older VHS copies of most if not all, Universal films shot in scope (a notable exception being the original VHS of The Dark Crystal, which was released by Thorn EMI Video).
    • On E.T. the Extra-Terrestial, the logo animates in reverse.
    • On old video prints of Charade, the logo is slightly off-center, due to a sloppy job reformatting the aspect ratio of 1:85.1 into 4:3. Another off center version can be found on the MCA Discovision, MCA Videocassette Inc. and MCA Home Video releases of Jaws.
  • On Jaws 3-D and Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn, a recreation of the logo for the 3D format is seen where the starfield is computer-generated and the "UNIVERSAL" text zooms in alongside the globe. The MCA byline (in a more extended font) fades in underneath, and a few sparkles are seen over the "UNIVERSAL" text. On current stereoscopic prints of Jaws, the standard scope version was instead converted to 3D.
  • A black-and-white version was seen at the beginning of the 1980 MCA Videocassette, Inc. VHS releases of the 1932 version of Scarface (with "RELEASE" at the bottom of the logo) and Psycho, and the 1965 unsold TV pilot Dark Intruder, which got a theatrical release.
  • On the end of Discovery Channel Southeast Asian prints of Jaws and Jaws 2, the logo is faster and the credits music plays over the logo.
  • On a 1983 promo for the studio, the logo was recreated in CGI. In this variant, the stars in the galaxy are computer generated, the "UNIVERSAL" text is bigger, shining from left to right and fading in with the globe (alongside the MCA byline), and with shooting stars circling all around. The Earth continues to zoom closer, past the text, and into the nighttime lights of Los Angeles, segueing to the rest of the promo. Created by Bo Gehring & Associates, this special variant was never used on an actual film, and was created exclusively for this promo. Had this actually been used regularly, Universal would have been the first major Hollywood studio to utilize a CGI film logo, predating Paramount's 1986 logo, the 1986 Warner Home Video "Cheesy Shield" logo and the 1986 RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video "Spinning Cube" logo by three years, and the next logo below by seven years (excluding film-specific variants).

Closing Variants:

  • At the end of some films from the era (most of the time after the MPAA rating screen), a blue background fades in with a yellow circle in the center of the screen containing the then-current print logo with "UNIVERSAL STUDIOS" written under it. Above and below the circle are "PRODUCED AT" and "CALIFORNIA, U.S.A", respectively. After a few seconds, a red ring fades in around the yellow circle with the text "THE ENTERTAINMENT CENTER OF THE WORLD". It then fades to a slide with a drawing of a red tour bus outside of a set in Universal Studios in Hollywood. On the top left corner of the screen is the yellow text "When in Hollywood Visit Universal Studios".
    • On some films that used this closing variant, the yellow circle would quickly zoom to the center of the screen.
    • Sometimes, the "PRODUCED AT" and "CALIFORNIA U.S.A" texts are absent.
    • From 1963 to 1970, a different drawing of the Universal Studios slide featuring more tourists is used. The text is white, left-adjusted, and reads "WHEN IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA VISIT UNIVERSAL CITY STUDIOS".
    • A variant of the "When in Hollywood" slide had "(Ask for Babs)" fade in under the text. This refers to the ending of National Lampoon's Animal House, in which Barbara "Babs" Jenson becomes a tour guide at Universal Studios. Animal House director John Landis would use this variant at the end of all the movies he did for Universal. Such examples include The Blues Brothers, An American Werewolf In London (the theatrical release only; all home video releases and TV broadcasts edit it out, a 2001 VHS release notwithstanding), Into the Night and Amazon Women on the Moon. If one did ask for "Babs", a source claimed that a discount or free entry to Universal Studios could be received. However, in 1989, Universal announced they would no longer be doing this.

FX/SFX: The rotating globe zooming-in, the Van Allen belts forming, and the "UNIVERSAL" text zooming out. This was very advanced for the 1960s, and its longevity is amazing, especially during the Eighties, when computerized logos were making their debut.

Music/Sounds: None or the opening theme of the film. Memorable instances of an opening theme being used include Father Goose (composed by Nelson Riddle), The Ghost and Mr. ChickenThe Dark Crystal, and The Night Walker (both composed by Vic Mizzy). The opening tag from the latter film was also heard in abridged form on The World of Abbott and Costello.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • On rare occasions, an updated version of the 1936 logo's fanfare composed by Jimmy McHugh was used.
  • The 1972 feature length pilot of the TV series Emergency! used a dramatic, drum-driven fanfare based upon the series theme.
  • On theatrical cartoon shorts produced for Universal by Walter Lantz Productions (particularly the Woody Woodpecker series), an upbeat, fast-tempo horn and percussion-driven fanfare (punctuated on some shorts with the sound of a pair of crashing cymbals) is heard with the 1963 "Universal Presents" logo before transitioning to each cartoon series' theme song.
  • On the Goodtimes DVD of Earthquake, the 1963 scope logo with "PRESENTS" underneath uses the fanfare from the Cinema International Corporation logo! This appears before the standard version.
  • On the U.S DVDs of the Battlestar Galactica movie (which is really the pilot episode "Saga of a Star World" released as a theatrical film in Europe), the 1963 logo is heard with the CIC fanfare.
  • On the 1984 MCA Home Video VHS of The Man Who Knew Too Much (plastering that film's Paramount logo), this logo has the VistaVision music, though it fits the logo quite well.
  • On a print of The Projected Man featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000, the logo curiously uses the Les Baxter-composed fanfare from the 1960-1963 American International Pictures logo (despite the latter having nothing to do with this film's production). However, the Shout! Factory Blu-ray just uses the opening theme.
  • On select foreign versions of Conan the Destroyer, the MGM lion roar is heard as a result of a sloppy plaster. This is likely because Universal owns North American rights to the film while MGM has overseas rights from the control of the Dino De Laurentiis catalog.
  • On the DVS VHS's of Back to the Future and The Land Before Time, a female narrator describes the logo saying "Now, the planet Earth spins in a black star-sprinkled sky. Dusty blue rings like spotlight beams focus on it with a golden word. Universal. An MCA Company." In this case, it's described by Carol Brooks on Back to the Future and Chloe Leamon on The Land Before Time. On the DVS VHS of The Land Before Time, Chloe Leamon describes the logo except the word "Now" is omitted from the description.
  • On the DVS VHS of E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, a young female narrator (Kria Sakakeeny) describes "Whirls of translucent vapor spiral around a spinning globe. Universal. An MCA Company. The words vanish as the planet recedes into outer space."

Availability: Very common.

  • It made its theatrical debut on Charade, released on December 5, 1963, and made its last regular appearance on Bird on a Wire, released on May 18, 1990.
  • This logo is very rarely plastered over with newer logos. A notable exception is on the 20th Anniversary version of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, which plasters that film's original variant with a special variant of the 1997 Universal logo; however, the original logo is preserved on the 1988 and 1996 VHS releases, the theatrical DVD and Blu-ray, and airings on HBO and Cinemax, as well as the 2015 Nickelodeon airing. It is also plastered by the 1997 logo on some current prints of On Golden Pond.
  • The "PRESENTS" variation of the logo is seen on Journey to the Far Side of the Sun, followed by the "a GERRY ANDERSON CENTURY 21 CINEMA PRODUCTION" logo. It can also be seen on American Graffiti.
  • Strangely, on Airport, this logo is seen after the end credits with the opening P.A. track for the film playing over it (pan-and-scan releases apparently had the logo and track at the start of the film, if the 1981 MCA Videocassette, Inc. release is anything to go by). It also appears this way on its Blu-ray release, but is silent as the P.A. track by itself was moved to its correct spot. A similar occurrence appeared on John Carpenter's The Thing (without any audio; this time around, the Universal logo remains at the end, even on pan-and-scan prints).
  • This logo is also seen on the Don Bluth/George Lucas and Steven Spielberg productions An American Tail, The Land Before Time, and the Paul Newman comedy Slap Shot.
  • A sped-up or cut-short version was seen on a few trailers from 1985-1990 (including those for all 3 Back to the Future films, the last of which actually uses the next logo in its debut), but most went without it.
  • This logo was not originally seen on the following films: The Electric Horseman, The Blues Brothers, Torn Curtain, Family Plot, and Frenzy, all of which did not use any logo in their original theatrical showings (recent releases of some of these films have this logo added on at the start, however). The Emergency! version can be found only on the pilot episode, available as part of the season 1 DVD set. (The episode is not rerun as part of the series' syndication package.)
  • The original 1963 version of this logo makes a surprise appearance on the trailer for By The Sea.
  • The logo was also retained on the 30th Anniversary theatrical re-releases of the first two Back to the Future films.
  • It appeared on theatrical prints of Associated Film Distribution titles they purchased the rights to; however, most home video, TV and/or streaming prints edit the logo out (since Universal only had theatrical rights; ITC Entertainment or other successor companies retained all other rights). On Golden Pond, for instance, had this logo on theatrical prints, but most video prints have this logo omitted (it does appear on the 1987 Mexican VideoVisa VHS release, however). Similarly, it was also seen on the theatrical release and an HBO airing of The Great Muppet Caper, but all home video releases of the film delete the logo. Conversely, the scope variant was deleted from Jim Henson Video's VHS of The Dark Crystal, but is still intact on Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's VHS and DVD releases of the film; the original Thorn EMI Video also retained it.
  • It was found on some trailers for Back to the Future: Part III, Ghost Dad, Jetsons: The Movie, Problem Child, and Darkman, all of which ultimately used the 75th Anniversary variant of the next logo.
  • It is surprisingly retained on the 2023 Kino Lorber Blu-ray of The Best of Times, a Kings Road Entertainment film Universal distributed theatrically. The 2013 Lionsgate logo precedes it, as they currently own media rights to the Kings Road catalog.
  • The closing variant is common on VHS and laserdisc releases, but extremely rare on DVD and Blu-ray, though it has started to become slightly more common again in recent years. It was also spotted on the Japanese Laserdisc of Back to the Future.
  • The CGI promo variant can be found at the beginning of Bo Gehring's 1983 demo reel.
  • Don't expect this logo on 1941 or Sorcerer, which Universal co-produced with Columbia and Paramount, respectively. Don't expect this on Watchers either. It is unknown if it even appears on any prints.

Editor's Note: A favorite of many, thanks to its advanced (for the time) animation and longevity. In fact, it lasted 27 years, making it one of the longest running film logos.

10th Logo (May 25, 1990-June 18, 1997)[]

Nicknames: "75th Anniversary", "Rotating Letters II", "MCA Globe II", "90s Globe", "90s MCA Globe", "75 Years of Universal", "75th Anniversary Globe", "Earth Globe VI", "Pre-CGI Globe"

Logo: A large "flash" appears as we view the far right side of the Universal globe, still cloudless and against the new detailed starfield background (à la the Orion Pictures logo). We move down the globe as the flash dims away and see, in golden letters, the word "UNIVERSAL", in a brand new font (named Copperplate Gothic Bold), appears from behind the globe and circling it. We zoom out and the globe moves to center, as the word "UNIVERSAL" straightens itself out and takes its place across the globe. The byline "AN MCA COMPANY", in gold and in spaced-out letters to fit the width of "UNIVERSAL", appears below the logo.

Trivia: This logo was produced by The Chandler Group and Studio Productions (now known as Flip Your Lid Animation), who also created the 1986 Paramount Pictures 1994 20th Century Fox logos. The animation of the globe and the letters were shot with motion control at The Chandler Group. The background was the painting that was done by Eric Von Schmidt.

Variants:

  • On films released from May 25, 1990 to April 26, 1991, a special variant was used to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of Universal Studios. It begins with brief clips of the 1927, 1936, and 1973 logos, and then segues into this logo, as if it were a grand unveiling, or a passing of the torch. When the logo forms, "75th ANNIVERSARY" appears on top of the logo, with "75" in the middle of "ANNIVERSARY", which is in spaced-out letters like the MCA byline, and written out in script with "th" flashing in next to "75". The registered trademark "®" symbol is also much smaller in size.
  • On some widescreen films such as Far and Away, the logo is zoomed out further than normal.
  • On The Hard Way, the 75th Anniversary logo has the widescreen in its original aspect ratio 2.35:1.
  • On 35mm uncropped film scan prints of films from Back to the Future Part III (the logo's debut film) to A Kiss Before Dying, the 75th Anniversary logo has the open matte in its aspect ratio 1.14:1.
  • This logo was revived for use on F9: The Fast Saga with several changes: the "®" has been removed, and the byline reads "A COMCAST COMPANY," fitting the diameter of the globe.

FX/SFX: The rotating globe and letters (which, contrary to popular assumption, are not CGI, but models filmed with motion control). Made by Studio Productions (now Flip Your Lid Animation).

Music/Sounds: A majestic orchestral fanfare by James Horner. In other cases, it's silent or uses the opening theme of the film.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • The "75th Anniversary" variant featured an extended version of the fanfare featuring a French horn and bell section.
  • A sped-up version of the fanfare was later used as the 1991 Universal Television theme.
  • On a VHS of Reach the Rock and the Universal Blu-ray of Dazed and Confused (the latter when you select the Spanish track), the next logo's fanfare is heard, most likely due to a reverse plaster error.
    • This was also used on F9: The Fast Saga, but as a variant as opposed to a reverse plaster error.
  • The 75th Anniversary logo is silent on the 1991 Media Home Entertainment/Fox Video VHS of Closet Land.
  • On the DVD print of Bandit: Bandit's Silver Angel, the theme is out of sync, starting a second or two before the logo fades in.

Availability: Uncommon, but still somewhat easy to find.

  • This logo made its theatrical debut on Back to the Future Part III, released on May 25, 1990, and made its final appearance on McHale's Navy, released on April 18, 1997.
  • The "75th Anniversary" variant was seen on Back to the Future Part III, Ghost Dad, Jetsons: The Movie, Problem Child, Mo' Better Blues, Darkman, Henry & June, Child's Play 2, White Palace, Havana, Kindergarten Cop, Lionheart, King Ralph, Closet Land, The Hard Way, Career Opportunities, and made its final appearance on A Kiss Before Dying.
  • The standard version debuted on Backdraft (although trailers for it have the 75th Anniversary logo). Notable films that use this logo include Cape Fear, Army of Darkness, Carlito's Way, Jurassic Park, Schindler's List, Casino, Happy Gilmore, Billy Madison, Casper, Waterworld, among others.
  • Recently, it was also seen on Commandments (released by Gramercy Pictures) and the TV movie Buried Alive II (a PAL DVD release has the next logo).
  • Most prints of Mallrats (including premium network broadcasts and video releases) have this logo preceding the Gramercy Pictures logo. However, most recent prints such as the Universal Blu-ray release have this replaced with the Focus Features logo.
  • Both this and the 2012 logo precede the 1987 New Line Cinema logo on VUDU's print of Drop Dead Fred (a 1991 PolyGram/Working Title production which New Line distributed for the US; however, Universal holds international rights due to them controlling some of the pre-1996 PolyGram library). The 25th Anniversary Blu-ray from Final Cut Entertainment also retains this combo, sans the 2012 logo. It is unknown if this remains intact on the Vinegar Syndrome Blu-ray (originally slated for release by Severin Films).
  • It was found on some trailers for The Lost World: Jurassic Park, Leave It to Beaver, A Simple Wish, and The Jackal, all of which ended up using the next logo.
  • On the international release of Street Fighter, the logo is plastered by the Columbia TriStar Film Distributors International logo, and the opening credits are edited to credit Columbia Pictures instead; however, the globe and sky still remain.
  • A portion of this logo appears about halfway through The King.
  • It was seen on a Comet airing of the series premiere of Sliders.
  • Strangely, the logo makes a surprise appearance on Reach the Rock with the 1997 theme.
  • It was seen on the international teaser trailer of Twister, found on the Brazilian VHS of Diabolique.
  • On international Blu-ray releases of The Relic, a silent version of the next logo is seen, while international DVD prints have the PolyGram Filmed Entertainment logo.
  • It was originally seen on some direct-to-video and television film releases (such as Bandit: Bandit, Bandit and Bandit: Bandit's Silver Angel); however, the next logo plasters it on streaming platforms.

Editor's Note: This is a great logo, and another favorite of many. There's absolutely nothing cheesy about this logo... except that it's historically out of place. Universal turned 75 in 1987, as they were founded in 1912 a month after Paramount Pictures' founding, and in 1987 they celebrated their 75th anniversary, so Universal is 3 years late, and did not turn 75 in 1990, they were turning 78 instead, but this could be the anniversary of when Universal City Studios opened (in 1915).

11th Logo (May 23, 1997-July 3, 2012)[]

Nicknames: "CGI Globe", "The Glittering Globe", "The Shimmering Globe", "The Transparent Globe", "2000s Globe", "Rotating Letters III", "Earth Globe VII", "Universal Studios Globe", "Pre-Comcast Globe"

Logo: On a black background, an arc slowly appears and brightens. A series of lights begin appearing below the arc and we see that this is another globe, looking over Europe. We move down as the lights appear all over Europe, and then Africa (which the Earth's continents now have the green, yellow, and red color design this time). As we begin to zoom out, the letters in the word "UNIVERSAL", in a similar font as the last logo but handsomely redone (this time, the text is still gold, but has the inner white part of the text rising out of the gold part), rotate to the front of the globe as the lights around the continents dim out. By this time, the globe is shining from the back (à la the 1993 Columbia Pictures logo). A small copyright appears at the bottom-right.

Trivia:

  • The logo was introduced to coincide with the rebranding of "MCA, Inc." into "Universal Studios, Inc." on December 9, 1996. It was designed by Identica Partnership in London.
  • It makes a cameo appearance on the DreamWorks film Tropic Thunder as the "studio" behind Scorcher VI: Global Meltdown, one of the three fictional parody trailers that are played before the start of the movie. Here, the logo was re-animated where, after the "UNIVERSAL" lettering flies away, the Earth stops spinning and turns into a post-apocalyptic magma wasteland to fit with the movie's theme.

Variants: A treasure trove. Here are a few variants:

  • There is a shorter version of this logo, beginning as the "UNIVERSAL" text slides in over the logo, with a shortened version of the fanfare. This is usually found at the end of documentaries produced for DVD by Universal Home Entertainment, with a web address for Universal's website.
  • From 1999 to 2010 (Excluding some variations) the URL, "www.universalstudios.com", in an orangish color, fades in at the end.
    • On the 2001 VHS Ride the Movies: Behind the Scenes at Universal Studios Hollywood, the URL instead reads "WWW.UNIVERSALSTUDIOSHOLLYWOOD.COM."
  • A prototype version of the 1998 variant exists where the URL is much smaller than usual. This is seen on Patch Adams and Virus that are on widescreen, and fade in along with the copyright notice. The fullscreen version of Patch Adams has the byline in a different font, while the fullscreen version of Virus uses the regular byline, with the copyright notice fading in after. Another version is seen on Cinderella Man, with the 2005 version and without the copyright.
  • Beginning with Meet the Fockers, the globe was graphically enhanced with a darker color and was rotating below the arc in the beginning. The font of the URL has changed to Helvetica.
  • Another variant has a darker mood. Nicknamed "The Transparent Globe", the presentation is the same as usual, except that the initial darkness of the globe is much darker than usual (pay close attention to that). Then, after the word "UNIVERSAL" is rotated from behind, a darker, thicker shadow suddenly pops out late after it locks in position, and the entire logo zooms out farther than its intended mark, and instead of slowing to a stop, it stops hard in its far-back position. The URL is in a Xerox Serif Wide-type font. The globe appears much further back in letterbox format. You can find this variant on the following films: 8 MileAmerican Wedding, SeabiscuitMaster and Commander: The Far Side of the World, The Bourne Supremacy, and White Noise. The 3D release of Despicable Me has this variant with a light shadow and with the NBCUniversal byline. A bylineless version of this variant can be seen on Hellboy II: The Golden Army.
  • The biggest variation came on November 21, 2001, when the studio celebrated the 20th anniversary of the most successful film of 1982, E.T the Extra-Terrestrial. It animates as normal until the very end, when the "UNIVERSAL" text fades out and the silhouette of E.T. and Elliott, on their bike, fly across the shining globe. Text appears on the bottom, "UNIVERSAL STUDIOS CELEBRATES E.T.THE 20TH ANNIVERSARY" with "E.T." in its own movie logo font. This was first used on Spy Game, and also appeared on A Beautiful Mind, How High, Brotherhood of the Wolf, Big Fat Liar (theatrical and home video versions only; TV airings have the standard logo), Dragonfly, 40 Days and 40 Nights, and Harrison's Flowers, with its final appearance being on E.T. the Extra Terrestrial (2002 Special Edition; Theatrical, 2002 DVD/VHS and TV airings). It was also used as a de facto home video logo on a 2002 UK VHS reissue of Man on the Moon. Starting with The Scorpion King, the normal version has been reinstated.
  • Starting in 2009, the URL has been replaced with a byline "A DIVISION OF NBC UNIVERSAL".
  • On some films, such as Nanny McPhee Returns, it is bylineless.
  • The URL/byline placement on this logo is dependent on the aspect ratio, medium of distribution, and region setting. Films that have the logo primarily set with an aspect ratio of 1.66:1 or 4:3, or any other fullscreen or Panavision aspect ratios (primarly on VHS, fullscreen DVDs, and Blu-ray) will have the URL/byline placed near the globe. Those set on 16:9 or any other widescreen ratios will have them placed farther from the globe.
  • Since 2004 this logo was used on licensed games (due to the closure of the Universal Interactive brand). It is entirely a still logo on a black background, usually in better quality than the movie counterpart, or had the shining, but never the full animation. Several games with the still logo used a white background. Sometimes, it replaced the Universal Interactive logo on earlier games like The Grinch.
  • On Curious George and The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: A VeggieTales Movie, the logo is brighter.

FX/SFX: The lighting of the globe and the rotation of the letters.

Music/Sounds: Begins with a powerful, majestic horn fanfare, followed by two orchestra hits. Then, another horn fanfare, followed by two more hits. Then, a very majestic fanfare as the logo is completed, with the horn theme coming back near the end. Composed by the late Jerry Goldsmith, who was also the composer for the 1985 Carolco and 1987 Paramount logo themes.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • On the UK VHS release of Charlotte's Web 2: Wilbur's Great Adventure, along with the Paramount Pictures logo and the film itself, the music is high-pitched. This was also mostly heard on PAL prints of films.
  • From November 21, 2001 to March 22, 2002, the music was changed in an arrangement by John Williams to go with the customized E.T. logo; there is only one horn fanfare/hits sequence, followed by the end fanfare. This then segues into the E.T. theme as he and Elliott fly across the globe.
  • When the E.T. logo was dropped on March 22, 2002, the music did not change back to the 1997 version until May 17, 2002. Instead, it's a re-orchestration of the 1997 fanfare, again in an arrangement by John Williams. Same melody, but like the E.T. logo, it is in a different key and sounds more "powerful", though this version was rather short lived.
  • On some prints of Tremors II and international Blu-rays of The American President and Strange Days, the previous logo's fanfare is heard, due to a plastering error; SyFy's print has the correct 1997 fanfare. This error is also present on the Polish dub of We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story.
  • On the R1 DVD of TimeCop 2: The Berlin Decision, if you select the French track, the entire logo (as well as the movie itself) plays low toned.
  • On a Foxtel Movies print of The Hurricane, and the R2 DVD of How the Grinch Stole Christmas if you select the French and Russia tracks, the second horn theme (which normally comes out of the right channel) is oddly omitted. This is likely due to a mastering mistake.
  • On The Lost World: Jurassic Park (the first movie with this logo) and some prints of How the Grinch Stole Christmas, the fanfare is slightly re-orchestrated.
  • On Phil's Dance Party and Freeform's print of Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, the music from the next logo is heard, the latter due to bad plastering.
  • On VUDU's print of Barbie and the Magic of Pegasus, a French television airing of The Green Mile, and AMC's print of The Lost World: Jurassic Park, the logo's music is in low-tone.
  • On Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, a 8-bit rendition of the fanfare is heard. The logo's regular music was used when Lucas Lee (played by Chris Evans) comes out of his green room for the shooting of his film, in which the hits and the last note are synced to his actions, such as cracking his neck, using his skateboard and landing on his feet at the scene. However, the logo's regular music is used on a still version of this logo (in low quality to match the game's visuals) in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Video Game and the next logo (without the Comcast byline) in the Definitive Edition.
  • On some films, the opening theme of the movie is used instead, or the theme is done differently.
  • On the Criterion Collection release of Quadrophenia, the current Criterion logo played a portion of the logo's fanfare because of bad plastering.

Availability: Very common. Appears on Universal films from the era.

  • This logo first appeared on The Lost World: Jurassic Park (although the trailers, TV spots and a featurette use the previous logo) and made its final theatrical appearance on Wanderlust.
  • This logo also precedes releases originally without this logo on video (and served as a de facto home entertainment logo), before direct-to-home media content (like An American Girl: McKenna Shoots for the Stars) and occasionally on cable channels, usually on made-for-TV movies (and as a result of that, sometimes deletes USA Cable Entertainment and other Universal Television-related logos at the end).
  • Also seen on new prints of The Blues Brothers (the theatrical cut only, the expanded version actually uses the 1963 logo), Tremors (replacing the 9th Logo), The American President, On Golden Pond (plastering the 9th logo), a PAL DVD release of The Shadow and Strange Days (Blu-ray international prints). It was also seen on the 1999 DVD of The Last Starfighter, plastering the 9th and Lorimar logos.
  • It was also found on some trailers for Dr. Seuss' The Lorax, Battleship, American Reunion, The Five-Year Engagement, and Snow White & The Huntsman (with the movies themselves using the next logo).
  • It was also seen on Comet's airings and streaming platforms of Season 3 to 5 opening of Sliders.
  • The logo also appeared in some video games, with the full version, the short version, or even the still version.
  • The only two Illumination films to use this were Despicable Me and Hop (albeit using a variant). Starting with Dr. Seuss' The Lorax, the next logo is used.
  • After Universal acquired the post-1996 Polygram catalog, this logo in any of its variants is often seen plastering the PolyGram logo.
  • Strangely, it appeared on the 2000 British VHS release of Rambo: First Blood Part II instead of the TriStar logo, including the other Carolco films that have releases in other countries on Blu-ray and DVD.

Editor's Note: A favorite of many, this is a very popular and iconic logo with a famous fanfare. Universal would reuse the fanfare for the next logo.

12th Logo (March 2, 2012- )[]

Nicknames: "CGI Globe II", "100th Anniversary Globe", "Rotating Letters IV", "Majestic Globe", "100 Years of Universal", "Comcast Globe", "Centennial Globe", "Earth Globe VIII"

Logo: On a black starry background, as the sun shines on the planet Earth, the camera pans backwards across Europe and Africa. Then "UNIVERSAL" in white with golden bordering rises upward as the sun pans down, and light glows on the continents. Then the screen eases back to its familiar position. The continents glow as the globe revolves showing the Americas. The sun shines, leaving a glow behind the Earth and the Earth's surface. Then the byline that reads "A COMCAST COMPANY" fades in underneath. The "UNIVERSAL" name shines before fading out.

Alternate Descriptive Video Description: In a black star-sprinkled sky, we soar backward over Earth. As massive block letters of gold and silver orbit into view, we pass to the dark side of the planet, where the continents show the speckled electrified glow of hundreds of cities. The Earth eclipses the Sun, and a massive word hovers front and center. Universal. A Comcast Company.

Trivia: The logo was designed by Weta Digital of New Zealand. It syncs to the four notes of the last part of the fanfare, shining on the first four letters.

Variants:

  • Just like as they did with their 1990 logo when the company celebrated their 75th Anniversary, Universal Pictures initially used a special variant of this logo on the year they celebrated their centennial milestone. In a similar manner to the 75th Anniversary variant, the logo acts out as another "grand unveiling" or "passing of the torch," as it begins with clips of the previous logos of the company's history, beginning with the 1927 logo and finishing with the previous logo; in which the current logo makes its majestic debut shortly afterwards. It features the words "100TH ANNIVERSARY" in gold, which are seen rotating in under the "UNIVERSAL" text at the same time. This extended montage was only used as an internet promotion video from the studio themselves, and was not used on an actual film.
    • A shortened variant containing just the current logo was used on films from March 2, 2012 to January 18, 2013 such as Dr. Seuss' The Lorax (very first film to use this logo), American Reunion, The Five-Year Engagement, Battleship, Snow White & the Huntsman, Ted, Savages, The Bourne Legacy, ParaNorman (international releases), Pitch Perfect, The Man with the Iron Fists, Anna Karenina, Zero Dark Thirty (European releases), This Is 40, Les Misérables, and Mama (the final film to use this variant of the logo).
  • A prototype version exists as seen on the behind-the-scenes videos of the logo being composed below. Noticeable differences include the logo being entirely in daytime, a different space background, a slightly different wordmark and an unfinished atmosphere, with the text even clipping through it.
  • The tinting in the logo may vary. Sometime, it has a bluish, greenish or purplish tint.
  • On the Pitch Perfect movies, the end of the logo cuts right to the opening shots.
  • On Les Miserables and The Super Mario Bros. Movie, it fades in just before "UNIVERSAL" comes in.
  • On A Dog's Purpose, it fades in just as the camera reveals "UNIVERSAL". After the byline fades in, it fades to the Amblin Entertainment logo.
  • On Blu-ray discs, there is a letterboxed version with the text "Loading a Fresh Preview from the Internet" added on the top black border. This pops up when a preview is loading from online while the viewer is using BD-Live.
  • There is a 4:3 version of the logo seen on certain full screen pre-1950 Paramount films and the 2018 DVD releases and Freeform broadcasts of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Frosty the Snowman as well as full screen prints of films starting with Mama.
  • A still version appears on licensed movie games, such as Battleship.
  • On the cover video of Universal Pictures Home Entertainment Canada's Facebook page, the globe is rotating as it shines, and the stars are twinkling in the background.
    • A short version of this variant exists on the Criterion Collection Blu-ray of One-Eyed Jacks (1961).

Closing Variants:

  • The full animation as transcribed above was seen at the end of American Made.
  • At the end of 1917, the logo is still. This is also used in the video games, American Ninja Warrior Challenge and Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Video Game Definitive Edition, with the latter in low quality to match the game's visuals, without the Comcast byline and the 1997 fanfare.

FX/SFX: The panning of the planet, the company name rising, the continents glowing. All brilliant CGI effects, and is reminiscent of the last two logos.

Music/Sounds: A powerful re-orchestration of the last logo's fanfare, originally composed by Jerry Goldsmith, accompanied by a choir, new string parts, and drum cadence utilizing world percussion instruments. Arranged by Brian Tyler. In some cases, it is silent or uses the opening theme of the film.

Music/Sounds Trivia: A behind the scenes video of the making of the logo's fanfare can be viewed here. Tyler also uploaded a retrospective video, which can be viewed here, and the full version of the fanfare, which is also heard before the start of Universal's Cinematic Spectacular: 100 Years of Movie Memories, as well as the first two videos, which can be heard here. If you look closely at the first two videos, there was a prototype version of the logo while Tyler is conducting the fanfare.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • On the 100th Anniversary logo variant, "One Last Wish" from Casper, composed by James Horner, is used during the montage.
  • On The Land Before Time: Journey of the Brave and Disney Channel's print of Big Fat Liar, the previous music is heard with this logo, due to sloppy plastering.
  • On the 2012 Blu-ray of Vertigo, it uses the 10th logo's fanfare.
  • Minions has five titular characters 'singing' the fanfare.
  • On the Pitch Perfect trilogy, an a capella version of the fanfare is sung by a group of a capella singers.
  • Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping features a vaguely EDM-sounding remix of the theme, albeit only halfway through the logo's animation.
  • An indie rock version of the logo's fanfare is heard in Yesterday. However, this only appears in the film's soundtrack (under the name "The World is Universal"), as the film itself uses the normal fanfare.
  • An abridged version of the fanfare was used in The Super Mario Bros. Movie.

Availability: Current.

  • The 100th anniversary logo was first unveiled on January 10, 2012, and is currently available on Universal's YouTube channel. It made its theatrical debut with Dr. Seuss' The Lorax (also the very first Illumination film to feature it, although trailers and TV spots for it had the previous logo) and made its last appearance on Mama. It was also seen on the Australian film Mental.
  • The version without the "100TH ANNIVERSARY" wording debuted theatrically on Identity Thief, although it previously appeared at the end of Universal's Cinematic Spectacular: 100 Years of Movie Memories at Universal Studios Florida, on Illumination films starting with Despicable Me 2, DreamWorks Animation films starting with How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, on trailers for movies released in 2013, and on the 2012 Blu-ray release of Vertigo.
  • This has plastered the 1997 logo on an airing of The Perfect Man on TBS and Big Fat Liar on Disney Channel and Freeform with the previous logo's fanfare.
  • This plasters the 10th logo on the director's cut of Dazed and Confused, such as on the Criterion 4K release, while the theatrical cut retains the original logo.
  • It has also been used as a de-facto home entertainment logo since 2012, except on 2012-17 Illumination films, where they go straight to the previews.
  • This logo also appears on international prints of MGM films (the ones distributed by United Artists Releasing) from 2019-22 (with the exceptions of Wrath of Man and Dog, as those films where handled by different international distributors), as well as many international prints of post-2012 Focus Features films.
  • This logo also appears on reprints of DreamWorks Animation films, plastering the 2002 and 2011 Paramount Pictures logos and the final 20th Century Fox logo, starting in 2018, and on newer films from said studio in 2019, beginning with the aforementioned How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. For South Korean releases, this logo plasters the CJ Entertainment logo, as CJ distributed DWA's films there. Universal does not use a closing variant on these new prints, unlike previous distributors Paramount and Fox.
  • It also appeared on anime shows distributed by NBCUniversal Entertainment Japan that are licensed by Funimation, as well as games like Jurassic World: Evolution, Jurassic World: Evolution 2, Fast & Furious: Showdown and Forza Horizon 2 Presents Fast & Furious.
  • Since 2021, this logo appears before the 2021 Warner Bros. Pictures logo in theatrical prints of Warner Bros. films in Hong Kong.
  • It was also seen on the 2019 Fathom Events screenings of The Muppet Movie (which is currently owned by Walt Disney Pictures), preceding the Jim Henson Pictures logo.

Editor's Note: A worthy update of the 1990 and 1997 logos, with beautiful CGI.


Copyright Stamps: Here is some information about the copyright stamps on the Universal Pictures films:

  • 1925-1935: Copyright © by Universal Pictures Corporation.
  • 1936-1937: Copyright © by Universal Productions, Inc.
  • 1937-1966: Copyright © by Universal Pictures Company, Inc.
  • 1966-1977, 1999-present: Copyright © by Universal Pictures.
  • 1977-1998: Copyright © by Universal City Studios, Inc.
  • 1999-present: Copyright © by Universal Studios.
  • 2019-present (DreamWorks Animation films only): Copyright © by DreamWorks Animation LLC. A Universal Pictures Release.

Currently, the logo is also credited at the end of every Universal film as "ANIMATED UNIVERSAL STUDIOS LOGO".

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