Things Change

I’ve never liked that Universal globe that appears at the beginning of their films. Not the one that was around in the late ’80s to mid ’90s (with the Universal logo orbiting the earth and coming to rest in front of the camera), but the luminous funny-looking one that’s been around for…what, eight or nine years?

The oddly intense colors on the continents look like a manifestation of some disease, like electric rashes or earth lesions. The real earth is such a beautiful thing; the colors and textures so soft and yet strong with all those browns and blues and gentle greens. The Universal gang should really think about dropping what they have and devising something new. Anything but the present version.

  • drturing

    completely fully agree with this. to this day it looks ugly and ridiculous.

  • WallySparks

    ive always thought it was the music behind the logo that actually brought the logo to life… the logo plus the music had always made me feel like i was about to watch somthing epic..weather it be fast and the furious(which is not by any means a film id recomend) to jurrasic park, which i think made the universal music and logo what it is today

  • WallySparks

    ive always thought it was the music behind the logo that actually brought the logo to life… the logo plus the music had always made me feel like i was about to watch somthing epic..weather it be fast and the furious(which is not by any means a film id recomend) to jurrasic park, which i think made the universal music and logo what it is today

  • Movie fan09

    WallySparks [TypeKey Profile Page] says …
    ive always thought it was the music behind the logo that actually brought the logo to life… the logo plus the music had always made me feel like i was about to watch something epic..weather it be fast and the furious(which is not by any means a film id recommend) to Jurassic Park, which i think made the universal music and logo what it is today.
    I completely agree.
    yea, the colors are tacky.
    but the music makes us remember why we love movies in the first place.
    even though they haven’t made a good action movie in a while.

  • Movie fan09

    this is my favorite:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=IqaSwEpcZto
    and columbia’s is great too:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=n-Vw9lvMY9s

  • Jeremy Smith
  • LexG

    Oh, yeah? I prefer this:
    (Maximum OWNAGE to follow…)
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=iuqXftKtV7k

  • Jeremy Smith

    Well, yeah. But do you own the t-shirt, Lex?

  • Jeremy Smith

    I hate myself for not all-capping OWN.

  • Redmond

    Lex, I think I just PEED a little.

  • DarthCorleone

    I always dug this TriStar logo from the 80s
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymllHbf_dPo
    and this United Artists logo
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8JefnIawRt0&feature=related
    for the same reason:
    awesome musical build. They always made me think I was about to see something special.
    Back in my childhood days, I would daydream in the theater that if my life were ever a movie, the TriStar logo would begin it.
    As for the Universal logo, I agree it looks tacky. The one time I thought the Universal opening was especially cool was when they did that special variation for Waterworld with the oceans gradually covering the land. Granted, that was probably the pinnacle of the movie, but it was still cool.

  • Teacher’s Pets

    The music is good on these, but I always liked the effect of the absence of it when they’d run them silently for dramatic effect, or with some foreboding music a la the first Matrix.

  • http://whatiwatchedlastnight.blogspot.com/ Ross

    I always liked the old Universal logo with the plane, they should update that somehow:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=_hs25nGKrq4
    20th Century Fox’s has probably always been my favorite:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-3j0e5zjJo
    Not necessarily the best visually, but the fanfare still gives me chills, when the conditions are right.

  • http://www.robertcashill.blogspot.com btwnproductions

    TriStar’s “three-legged unicorn” was widely derided back in the day.

  • Jay T.

    I’ve always like their intro… of course, that’s more so when they show it along with music or dialogue from the film. Kinda like the beginning of Out of Sight does.

  • http://getmcneil.blogspot.com/ MickTravis

    I think they should always use the Universal logo that ran in front of one of the Spike Lee movies — “Jungle Fever” ? — where Flavor Flav spells “universal” as the logo orbits in, then he cracks himself up and gives a shout out to himself.
    Barring that, this is my favor fave:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=s9kCGzuTMI0&feature=related

  • Mr. Blood Vessel

    WallySparks [TypeKey Profile Page] says …

    ive always thought it was the music behind the logo that actually brought the logo to life… the logo plus the music had always made me feel like i was about to watch something epic..weather it be fast and the furious(which is not by any means a film id recommend) to Jurassic Park, which i think made the universal music and logo what it is today.

    I completely agree.
    yea, the colors are tacky.
    but the music makes us remember why we love movies in the first place.
    even though they haven’t made a good action movie in a while.

  • Craptastic

    Here’s my Cliff Clavin moment: That logo appeared for the first time on Jurassic Park.
    Why I remember that…. I have no idea.

  • ROTC

    This one made quite an impression on me when I saw it years ago in summer camp:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=bNVZAWxFNXo

  • Mr. Blood Vessel

    this is my favorite:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=IqaSwEpcZto

    and columbia’s is great too:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=n-Vw9lvMY9s

  • bmcintire

    The Universal doesn’t bother me so much. It’s a little too Rand-McNally in color, but it’s a far cry better than the flat, dull blue (with the weird Saturn-like rings of light) that prevailed through the 70’s:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWBqGwudMok
    My favorite treatments are both of Fox’s. SUNSHINE’S Fox Searchlight logo:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GZLeIWDY4qU
    And DIE HARD IV’s 20th Century Fox logo:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u7Lla72qA8k

  • The Winchester

    Craptastic, I hate to be that guy, but I’m fairly certain it was Lost World, not Jurassic Park, that the new one first premiered on.
    Agreed with how it was treated best in Out of Sight, when the music was replaced with Isley brothers, always a welcome change.
    And I like how in Doom, the Universal logo circles Mars.
    Since I’ve been drinking and rambling, I’d also like to throw in my vote for the beginning of GO, when the Columbia logog segues perfectly into the house music and the movie gets started.
    And for what it’s worth, I can never hear the 20th Century Fox fanfare without thinking that Star Wars will be shortly following it.
    I’m finished.

  • UnChien

    Jeremy Smith: The music used for the 1940’s Universal logo sounds a bit like the theme from Superman no?

  • Midwest Doug

    I’ve always wondered why the UNIVERSAL logo orbits… the Earth. What are we, Ptolemists?

  • hcat

    Hate to be that guy as well Winchester but I swear it was liar liar a few months previous that premiered the current Universial Logo.
    Love this conversation
    My least favorite would have to be Miramax’s followed by Vantage, even SPC’s quiet white against blue is more exciting.
    Love Fox’s logo, just promises greatness (and sometimes is the best part of the movie). But the Focus logo is my favorite, just makes you settle in for what follows.
    I always think you can tell the real movie fans in the audience by who is humming along with the logos.

  • Rich S.

    My favorite commentary on the Universal logo came from MST3K. They were doing a Universal B-movie from the 50s, when the logo said “Universal International.” One of the robots commented, “Wait, if it’s Universal, isn’t it automatically international?”

  • /3rtfu11

    Best Studio Logo is a tie between Paramount and Fox
    Warner comes next … then the rest

  • Mr. Peel

    I’m gonna have to agree that the current Universal logo appeared for the first time on THE LOST WORLD. The one I like is the slightly different Universal logo from the 70s & 80s that would appear on the Scope films where the approach to Earth seems slower and more mysterious. It always makes me think I’m about to see JAWS.

  • anti-sardine

    I think Gruver is right about the Universal opening. Maybe something more along the lines of the opening of the BBC Planet Earth:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnouxC6DdPA
    slightly chopped up at the end, but you get the picture.

  • Jay T.

    It’s funny how certain company’s intros give different viewer’s vibes… basd on movies you specifically remember the intro appearing before. Whenever I see Working Title or New Regency, I get a good feeling, for example.

  • hcat

    Now I am not going to be able to let this go, I will have to netflix liar liar to find out if I’m wrong.

  • The Winchester

    I love that old approaching Earth logo. Makes The Thing that much creepier.

  • jockgroove

    TriStar.
    Best ever.
    Period.
    I’m still mad Sony got rid of it when they merged the two companies.
    Fox was great when it launched, but it’s in dire need of an update. (not the score, but the animation).
    Surprised Grey and company have not tweaked the Paramount mountain since their new regime came in.

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    Ed Hardy

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