Logo descriptions by Jason Jones and Matt Williams
Logo captures by Eric S., Hoa, V of Doom, Logophile, Mr.Logo, naxo-ole and StephenCezar15
Editions by Bob Fish, Shadeed A. Kelly, Logophile, Curiousgeorge60, Chowchillah, and Yoshidude987
Background: Warner Bros. Pictures was originally founded in 1918 by the Warner brothers Harry (1881-1958), Albert (1883-1967), Sam (1887-1927), and Jack L. (1892-1978), Polish-Jewish brothers who emigrated from Belarus to Ontario, Canada, as the third-oldest American movie studio in continuous operation, after Paramount Pictures was founded on May 8, 1912 as "Famous Players Film Corporation", and Universal Studios founded on June 8, 1912. However, Warner Bros. Pictures officially opened its doors on April 4, 1923. In 1967, Warner Bros. Pictures merged with Seven Arts Productions, who renamed it to "Warner Bros.-Seven Arts". In 1969, it was purchased by Kinney National Co., which was later reincorporated as Warner Communications in 1972 when it spun-off its non-entertainment assets, due to a financial scandal over its parking operations. Since 1989, it is a subsidiary of Time Warner, formed as a merger between the conglomerates Time, Inc. and Warner Communications. In 1992, Time Warner formed "Time Warner Entertainment" by merging all of its entertainment operations for the first time. Internet giant AOL merged with Time Warner in January 2001, renaming the company as AOL Time Warner, but in summer 2003, the conglomerate name was reverted back to Time Warner (often with no space in between the words) due to lawsuits and a $99 million loss. Today, with the exceptions of some films WB merely distributed, such as Sayonara (currently owned by the estate of the producer), Moby Dick (currently owned by MGM), Rope (currently owned by Universal Studios) and Hondo (owned by Batjac Productions), the pre-1950 catalog is held by Turner Entertainment Co., but the WB films owned by Turner are distributed by Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc. after Time Warner's acquisition of Turner Broadcasting System in October 1996.
(September 23, 1923-August 30, 1929)
Nicknames: "Brain Shield", "Studio Shield", "WB Shield", "Brain WB Shield"
Logo: On a black background, a large, bizarrely shaped shield is seen, with a very wide top. The top part of the shield shows a picture of the Warner studio in Burbank CA, the bottom having a squashed, stylized "WB". "A WARNER BROTHERS" is above the shield (with "WARNER BROTHERS" in an arc around the shield, ala the first Columbia logo), with "CLASSIC of the SCREEN" below. Starting in 1926 or so, it changed to "PRODUCTION".
Closing Titles: There are two closing titles for this WB era:
- 1st Closing Title: We see the words "THE END" all in capitals on both sides of the WB shield, with "THE" on the left and "END" on the right. The "T" on "THE" and the "E" on "END" are bigger than the other letters. Below the shield, we see "A WARNER BROTHERS CLASSIC OF THE SCREEN" in big capital letters. But on some movies, the WB shield was omitted. For example, Beau Brummel (1924) had a BG with some books and two candles on both sides of the screen. Above the books, we see the "The End" in a small, fancy white script arched above a small "A WARNER BROTHERS "CLASSIC of the SCREEN"" text.
- 2nd Closing Title: The second variant is the one you are seeing on the 3rd photo from left to right. On The Jazz Singer (1927), it was superimposed on a marble-like BG.
Availability: Near extinction. This logo was thought to have been extinct for years. Evidence of it was seen on a Warner Bros. 75th Anniversary trailer on 1998 Warner Home Video videos. However, it has appeared at the start of the film The Jazz Singer, and was kept intact on the 75th Anniversary DVD as well as on the 1981 Magnetic Video release, where it's preceded by a United Artists "Transamerica T" logo. This is retained on all extant silent-era Warner Bros. films shown on TCM such as The Better 'Ole. The logo premiered at the beginning of The Gold Diggers and made its final appearance on Gold Diggers of Broadway.
Scare Factor: Minimal, due to the strange design of the logo.
(November 7, 1929-August 29, 1936)
Nicknames: "The Early Shield", "Vitaphone Shield", "WB Shield II"
Logo: The words "WARNER BROS. PICTURES, Inc." appear, and below that "& THE VITAPHONE CORP." appears in a much smaller font, with the "VITAPHONE" using "electric" style letters. Below that is a very small WB shield (using the stylized WB seen in logo 1), and in script, "Present". Behind it there is the drawing of a flag, "waving" so it looks like it is in three sections. On the first one, "WARNER BROS." appears, followed by the electric-letter "VITAPHONE" logo and on section 3, "PICTURES".
Closing Title: The closing variation has "The End" instead of "Present".
Trivia: The First National Company also used this logo, but modified with the words "FIRST NATIONAL" instead of "WARNER BROS. PICTURES". Also, on some features, only a very big banner saying "VITAPHONE", was shown, omitting the First National or the Warner Bros. logo.
Availability: Scarce. It's preserved on any film from Warner Bros. from this era, including pre-1999 video releases by Magnetic Video, CBS/Fox Video, Key Video, and MGM/UA Home Video. However, on the DVD version of G-Men, it has usually been updated with the 1948 shield logo, although this logo is kept at the end of G-Men. The logo premiered on Paris and made its final appearance on Anthony Adverse.
Scare Factor: None.
(July 27, 1935-December 18, 1937)
Nicknames: "Zooming Shield", "WB Shield III", "Zooming WB Shield"
Logo: Over a cumulonimbus cloud setting, a superimposed WB Shield design zooms in to the screen. The words "WARNER BROS. PICTURES, Inc. Present" appear over the shield.
Variants: There are three odd, rare variants of this logo:
- For colorized releases, mainly Captain Blood, the cloud background is blue and the shield is yellow.
- The shield is a still image, and is shaped extremely bizarrely.
- The shield is seen on a white backdrop. Instead of the shield zooming into the camera, the opposite takes place.
Closing Title: We see, on a special BG, superimposed on the last scene of a movie or the cloud background of the opening logo, the words "The End" in a fancy script font, with either the WB or the FN logos and "Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.", or rarely "Warner Bros. Productions Corporation", or "First National Pictures, Inc." below. Later, the disclaimer changed to either "A First National Picture" or "A Warner Bros. Picture" and the font for "The End" would change different times.
FX/SFX: The shield zooming in. Could it be that this is what inspired the Looney Tunes "Bullseye" opening titles? It's a possibility.
Music/Sounds: The opening theme of the movie.
Availability: Very rare. It's seen on films from the period and occasionally seen on TCM. Its first known appearance is on Broadway Gondolier and made its final theatrical appearance on She Loved a Fireman.
Scare Factor: Low to medium, on account of the really rough zoom in and the shield's rather strange, elongated design, especially to viewers who are not used to this.
(December 25, 1937-May 29, 1948)
Nickname: "WB Shield IV"
Logo: Inside a shield, a more realistic version of the stylized "WB" as seen in the previous logo appears. Over the shield is a banner that reads "WARNER BROS. PICTURES, INC." Below the logo is the word "Presents" in script.
- For color releases, this logo was sepia-toned.
- Starting in 1942, "JACK L. WARNER, EXECUTIVE PRODUCER" was seen below the Warner Bros. Pictures banner.
- Starting in 1944, the word "PRESENTS" is now in the same font as the Warner Bros. Pictures banner.
- A colorized version of this logo exists on The Maltese Falcon and Casablanca among others.
- An ornate hand-drawn version of the shield against a parchment-like background was seen on some films, such as The Adventures of Robin Hood and The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex.
Closing Title: Superimposed on a special background or sometimes on the last scene of the movie, the huge words "The End" (with font varying on a movie) fade in, with the "WB" shield bug and "A WARNER BROS. PICTURE" in small letters below, but sometimes, due to the deal between WB and First National Pictures, the disclaimer was "A WARNER BROS.-FIRST NATIONAL PICTURE", or it was sometimes shortened to "A FIRST NATIONAL PICTURE" with the WB shield bug intact.
Music/Sounds: Usually the beginning of the movie's theme, or a majestic horn sounder, composed by Max Steiner. On at least two Humphrey Bogart films, To Have and Have Not and Dark Passage, a different fanfare, composed by Franz Waxman, plays.
Availability: Fairly common. It's seen on Warner releases of the period, like Casablanca on TCM. It premiered on Tovarich and made its final appearance on Silver River.
Scare Factor: None.
(July 31, 1948-November 1, 1967)
Nicknames: "The Classic Shield", "The Golden Shield", "WB Shield V"
Logo: Same as before, only the design has been cleaned up a bit. The border of the shield, banner, text, and "WB" are now gold, and the inside of the shield is now blue. The banner phrase is now changed to "WARNER BROS. PICTURES" and is now gold. "Presents", in the same font as the previous logo, usually appears below. Also, the background is now a cloud skyline (much like the logos of 1984 on). For the later years, this logo was usually superimposed onto the titles of Warner features of this period.
- A color version of this logo appears on color releases, such as Rope among others.
- There were many different cloud background variants throughout the years.
- A sepia-toned variant of this logo can be found on Jack and the Beanstalk and Bonnie and Clyde.
- Some movies, most notably The Crimson Pirate and The Master of Ballantrae, had this logo on a different cloud skyline.
- On some 3D films, films that were originally planned to be made in 3D, or the occasional film intended for 2D like House of Wax, Hondo, Dial M for Murder, Them!, The High and the Mighty, and Rebel Without a Cause, the WB shield looks more three-dimensional. It was also used for logo plastering, as was the case for reissue prints of the 1951 film Force of Arms (aka A Girl for Joe).
- No less than three cloud background variants were used for the 3D version. The first was used for House of Wax; the second was used for Hondo and Dial M for Murder; and the third was used for Them!.
- One film that had the "Presents" text absent is Alfred Hitchcock's Under Capricorn.
- Some movies, most notably Battle of the Bulge and Cool Hand Luke, had the logo on a black background.
- Sometimes, the banner reads "WARNER BROS. PICTURES INC." like the previous logo. This can be seen on some movies, most notably The Prince and the Showgirl.
- 1st Closing Title: Was the same as above, seen only with the "A Warner Bros.-First National Picture" and "A First National Picture" text.
- 2nd Closing Title: Superimposed on the last scene of a movie or a special BG, the words "The End" with font varies on that movie fades in with the WB shield bug between two thick lines below. Sometimes, the following disclaimers were used:
- "Produced and Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc."
- "Produced by Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc."
- "Produced and Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures"
- "Distributed by Warner Bros."
- These texts are seen sandwiched below "The End" and above the WB shield bug.
Music/Sounds: Same as the previous logo. Sometimes, it was usually the beginning of the movie's theme music.
Music variant: On New York Confidential, the logo had a different fanfare, composed by Joseph Mullendore.
Availability: Seen on many of the Warner Bros. movies on AMC and TCM. It has also been plastered onto the DVD version of G-Men. It premiered on Key Largo and the final movie to use this logo was Cool Hand Luke (but copyrighted to Warner Bros.-Seven Arts, as the merger had finished by the time the film was completed). Sometimes, this may be preceded by a later logo, as seen on the earliest home video releases of Them! (where the 9th logo preceded this one).
Scare Factor: None.
(September 28, 1967-July 29, 1970)
Nicknames: "WB-7", "W7", "Lucky Number 7 on WB", "W7 Shield"
Logo: Just a superimposed, stylized shield which can be white, yellow or red. The shield features a combination of a "W" and a "7", representing Warner Bros.-Seven Arts. The "W7" is often drawn on-screen, a la the NBC Snake, although it's a still logo on a few films. Below the shield, "WARNER BROS.-SEVEN ARTS" is seen. The word "Presents" usually appears under the shield.
Closing title: After the words "The End" and the credits, the words "Distributed by Warner Bros.-Seven Arts" are seen in the screen superimposed in the last scene of the movie or a special BG with the W7 shield bug below.
FX/SFX: The "trace"; sometimes done over the backdrop of a specific movie
Music/Sounds: None, or the opening of the movie.
Availability: Rare. It's seen on some Warner Bros. films of the period, though WB usually replaces it with a newer logo. Examples of this include pre-1998 prints of Bullitt, which were plastered by the 1984 Warner Communications "Shield of Staleness" with the exception of the 1980 WCI Home Video release, and the WCI release of The Green Berets, where the Big W plasters it. The current DVD/Blu-ray release of Bullitt, and current prints of Charro, The Wild Bunch, and Chisum have their logos intact/restored. Also seen after the 1984 Warner Communications shield logo on The Arrangement, which aired on an international version of TCM. But current DVDs and American prints have the 1999 logo. It premiered on The Bobo and made its final appearance on Chisum.
Scare Factor: Minimal. The logo looks weird, but nothing is scary.
(August 3, 1970-March 10, 1972)
Nicknames: "Shield Stretch", "The Kinney Shield", "Long Shield", "The Kinney WB Shield"
Logo: Over a blue screen is an abstract shield (like those seen on WB movie posters in the '60s) in a golden color with a dark brownish color inside. A simple lettering of the WB appears at the upper part and a rectangle of the same colors appear at the lower part of the shield, with the Kinney byline inside. The word "PRESENTS" appears underneath the logo.
- August 3, 1970-Early 1971: "A KINNEY NATIONAL COMPANY"
- Mid-Late 1971: "A KINNEY LEISURE SERVICE"
- Early-March 10, 1972: "A KINNEY COMPANY"
- On Billy Jack, the byline is: "A KINNEY SERVICES COMPANY"
- At the end of the film, we sometimes see the byline "Distributed by WARNER BROS." or "Distributed by WARNER BROS. INC." on top of (or in the case of THX-1138, underneath) a superimposed rendition of the company logo. (On earlier films from 1970, such as Chisum and The Battle of Cable Hogue, there is no banner/byline on the superimposed version.)
- Some films (including There Was a Crooked Man... and THX-1138) had the logo on a black background.
- Others (such as The Omega Man) had it superimposed over the opening credits.
- Dirty Harry and Billy Jack do not have the "PRESENTS" text.
- Some films had a two-dimensional version of the shield appearing in white over a black background.
- On the 1970 re-release print of the 1956 movie Giant, the Kinney Shield was set over the Classic WB Clouds. It is unknown if this appears on any home video release.
Music/Sounds: Again, the opening/closing theme of the movie's theme or silence.
Availability: As we all know, Warner was incredibly shoddy with logo preservation until recently. AMC and TCM showings of Warner movies MAY include this logo, but expect one of the more recent WB shield logos, most likely the Warner Communications and Time Warner (not Time Warner Entertainment) variations. No logo is seen at all on the 2007 DVD/Blu-ray release of A Clockwork Orange, though it is seen on the earlier 2000 issue. Is seen on the Encore Westerns print of the John Wayne film Chisum, and on the legendary Visconti movie Death in Venice (1971). On AMC, it can be found on Dirty Harry (also seen on the Dirty Harry Ultimate Collection Box Set and DVD releases of the said movie afterwards). The logo is also retained on the DVD releases of The Omega Man, The Cowboys, Billy Jack and THX-1138, as well as an early VHS release of the former. Also found on There Was a Crooked Man... It premiered on Performance and made its final appearance on What's Up, Doc?.
Scare Factor: None. This logo is actually neat to see.
Nicknames: "Alternate Kinney Shield", "Off-Kilter Shield"
Logo: On a background similar to the last logo, a bannerless WB shield is seen, with the design being more closer to the classic WB shield. "A KINNEY LEISURE SERVICE" is seen below.
FX/SFX/Cheesy Factor: The shield looks VERY ugly.
Music/Sounds: The opening audio of the movie.
Availability: Seen on The Man in the Wilderness, which is preserved on the Warner Archive Blu-ray.
Scare Factor: None to minimal. Unless you were expecting the previous logo to show up, then you should be fine.
(May 24, 1972-January 31, 1973)
Nicknames: "WCI Shield", "Early WCI Shield", "Tiny Shield", "Mini Shield", "WB Shield VI", "Bannerless WB Shield"
Logo: The standard WB shield logo, without the banner. It is on a blue background with "A WARNER COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY " underneath. "Presents", in script, may appear below
Variant: On the 1986 VHS release of Deliverance, the aspect ratio of the logo was changed from 2.35:1 squeezed into 4:3 full screen.
Music/Sounds: Silence or the beginning of the movie's theme.
Availability: Ultra rare. This was on only a few movies to begin with (notably Deliverance, The Candidate, and Super Fly) and has usually been updated with the 1984 shield logo and its later variations, so it's hard to say. This is currently intact on the DVD release of The Candidate, and the current DVD and Blu-ray release of Deliverance, along with airings on TCM Australia and Fox Classics (the latter in widescreen!). The logo is also preserved on Warner's 1986 VHS and Betamax release of Rage, along with the 1994 VHS of Dracula A.D. 1972. It premiered on Malcolm X (1972 documentary) and made its final theatrical appearance at the end of Steelyard Blues.
Scare Factor: None.
(January 31st, 1973-September 28th, 1984)
Nicknames: The Big "W", "(\\')", "The Worms"
Logo: On a black background, a red abstract "W" consisting of two slanted elongated circles and a shorter elongated circle zooms in towards us. Around halfway through, the words "WARNER BROS" (in the Warner Communications custom typeface) appear below it. The red logo overtakes the screen as a smaller white "W" zooms in. It stops at the middle of the screen and a black square field, whose corners have been rounded and softened, fades in around the logo. "A WARNER COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY" in the same font fades in below. Most of the time, "PRESENTS" fades in below after that (in Helvetica).
Trivia: The Big \\' was designed by Saul Bass (1920-1996), who also designed the Geffen "G" logo. The "Worms" nickname is attributed to an audio commentary on the movie Gremlins, which brought back the shield logo.
- On the 1976 film All the President's Men, the logo is in black-and-white and "PRESENTS" is absent. This variant is preserved on the DVD of the film.
- Most times, the word "PRESENTS" fades in after the logo is formed. On some films (including The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Movie, Just Tell Me What You Want, The Looney, Looney, Looney Bugs Bunny Movie, The Man with Two Brains, National Lampoon's Vacation and Daffy Duck's Movie: Fantastic Island), "PRESENTS" fades in at the same time as the byline.
- On Superman: The Movie and Beyond the Poseidon Adventure, a white (\\') zooms in on a black background and stops in the middle. The words "RELEASED BY WARNER BROS" fade in below. (Superman retained this on early video releases, but it was replaced by the regular version on later releases, and the 1984 version of the shield on later video releases. It was restored on the film's DVD and Blu-ray releases. Current HD prints of the film as seen recently on Encore HD, remove it and replace it with the variant seen on Flags of Our Fathers, although it's retained on the SD prints.)
- On some other outside productions released by WB (including Superman III, among others), "RELEASED BY WARNER BROS" replaces "WARNER BROS" at the beginning of the logo. (This version was retained on the original video release of Superman III.)
- On the original version of The Exorcist, the logo is austerely presented over a black background.
- On Exorcist II: The Heretic, there is a still image of a black \\' inside a red square field, with "WARNER BROS, A WARNER COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY" below in red.
- On some prints of Night Moves and Dog Day Afternoon, the word "PRESENTATION" appears below the Warner Communications byline, making the phrase "A WARNER COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY PRESENTATION".
- Though the 1973 film Steelyard Blues had the "Big W" logo, it still used an in-credit "Distributed by" version of the early 1972 WB logo at the end.
- On the 1984 VHS release of Class of '44, the logo's 2.35:1 aspect ratio was squeezed into 4:3 full screen.
- On trailers for re-releases, the logo has a copyright notice at the bottom, while on the top it says " A RE-RELEASE FROM WARNER BROS.". This has been seen on reissue trailers of Superman: The Movie and Around the World in 80 Days.
- On The Swarm (1978), the scope version of the logo is seen unmatted at 1.78:1, showing the logo and the red background at a much farther distance.
- Original 1981 home video prints of The Prisoner of Second Avenue (1975) have this logo at the end of the film, even though it had an in-credit version of the WB Distribution logo at the end.
- The closing "DISTRIBUTED BY WARNER BROS" logo has the colors inside out, with the "W" in black and the field in white.
- An early version of this logo had a different font for the text as well. (This version appeared at the beginning of some prints of The Shining).
- A black-and-white version appeared at the end of TCM's print of Onionhead, followed by the 2003 Warner Bros. Television logo.
- An ITV overnight showing of the 1968 film The Heart is a Lonely Hunter in early September 1996 had its original W7 logo at the beginning, but this logo, with "PRESENTS", oddly appeared at the end.
- Some early WCI Home Video releases have this closing variant sloppily tacked on at the end of some features, and replacing the Warner Bros. distribution logo at the end of early video prints of Mister Roberts (1955) and replacing the National General Pictures distribution logo at the end of the WCI print of Executive Action (1972).
FX/SFX: The zooming in of the W. Very effective animation that holds up decently today. None for the closing variant.
Music/Sounds: Usually silent, but some movies have the beginning of the movie's theme playing over it.
Availability: Rare. Warner Bros.' editing bug in the '80s and early '90s meant that Warner Communications and Time Warner shield logos were seen over this logo and, ironically enough, that this did some plastering of its own back when it was the current logo, as seen on early WCI/Warner VHS and Betamax releases of The Green Berets (originally had the 6th logo) and The Candidate (originally had the 8th logo). WB continues to plaster this logo with newer ones, even into the early 2000s, such as on The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Movie and The Looney, Looney, Looney Bugs Bunny Movie, which both have it replaced with the extended 2004 WB Family Entertainment logo. However, a few movies on Encore contain this logo (Oh, God! is one) after the 1992 WB logo. The 2007 remastered edition of the Led Zepplin movie The Song Remains the Same retains this logo, and you can find this logo on early VHS, Laserdisc and Betamax releases by WCI/Warner Home Video. The 1986 VHS of Superman: The Movie has that film's variant plastered by the "PRESENTS" variant of the 1984 logo, though most other video prints retain this, and it is no longer seen on current HD prints of that film. On AMC's prints of the Dirty Harry films Magnum Force, The Enforcer and Sudden Impact, this logo is retained, though the latter two films have their logo edited due to time, though these said films have the logo intact on recent DVD releases. Also seen intact on the HBO Family print of The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Movie, the 1999 VHS releases of Badlands (also on the DVD release) and Twilight Zone: The Movie, most WCI releases, earlier and some later WHV releases, and the 2-disc DVD of Enter the Dragon. Also preserved on DVD releases of Bugs Bunny's 3rd Movie: 1001 Rabbit Tales. Can also be seen on the DVD releases of Uptown Saturday Night and Outlaw Blues, which were released under their Warner Archive label. It is also preserved on DVD releases of Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, Barry Lyndon and Mean Streets. This logo is also seen on the 1984 WHV print of The Great Race, as well as the 1985 U.S. and 1987 Canadian WHV print of Them! (where it precedes the 5th logo). It remains intact on the 2005 extended edition DVD of The Outsiders (although the original theatrical version is still plastered by the "Shield of Staleness"). Has recently been seen in Australia on airings of The Looney, Looney, Looney Bugs Bunny Movie, Taxi Driver, and Badlands on Fox Classics (an Australian cable channel). It premiered on Steelyard Blues and made its final theatrical appearance on Irreconcilable Differences (as seen on the Vestron Video release). It also appeared before the CBS Theatrical Films logo on all CBS theatrical releases from Table for Five to Finders Keepers (the last film to use this logo before the Shield of Staleness), although it also appeared on the theatrical release of Better Off Dead.... Strangely, the distribution logo was seen at the end of the first two volumes of Beetlejuice (animated TV series) tapes from 1990.
Scare Factor: Medium to high. The zooming, silence, and color scheme does seem a bit unsettling. However, this logo is a favorite of many, but you might hate it for putting the iconic shield on hiatus for nearly 12 years.
(June 8, 1984-January 19, 2001)
Nicknames: "The Shield Returns", "Shield of Staleness", "Shield in the Sky", "WB Shield VII"
Logo: Over a set of clouds (exactly the design of the clouds used in some versions of the 1948 logo), the WB shield appears (including the banner reading "WARNER BROS. PICTURES"), with the name of the owner at the bottom.
- June 8, 1984-August 24, 1990: "A WARNER COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY"
- March 9, 1990-February 26, 1993: "A TIME WARNER COMPANY"
- August 14, 1992-January 19, 2001: "A TIME WARNER ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY"
- For some of their earlier films, and for films that had this logo plastered on over older logos, the word "PRESENTS" faded in a couple of seconds afterward, like on WB films that originally used the 9th logo. This logo was also seen in black and white when added to the beginning of some films, such as Onionhead.
- On older prints of The Killing Fields, we see the WB shield, then the Warner Communications byline fades in.
- On Malcolm X (the 1992 film), the scope version of the logo is shown unmatted at 1.78:1, thus it is shown at a farther distance, revealing more of the background.
- 1984-1998: The end logo, seen at the end of most movies, features a simple superimposed WB shield (without a banner), much like the short lived logo from early 1972. The phrase "DISTRIBUTED BY WARNER BROS." appears above the shield with the owner byline at the bottom. On films from 1984-roughly 1989, it would use the big W logo. On some films from 1987-1989, such as The Witches of Eastwick, Above the Law, Caddyshack II, Lethal Weapon 2, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation and Driving Miss Daisy, the credit logo used the previous logo font with a WB shield. A variation of the credit logo can be seen at the end of The Bonfire of the Vanities with the WB shield and below that "Distributed by Warner Bros., A Time Warner Company".
- June 8, 1984-May 25, 1990: Same as the previous logo. Seen at the end of some films during this period, such as Gremlins, Cannonball Run II, and The NeverEnding Story. The last film to use this was The Witches.
- December 8, 1988-May 12, 2000: Another ending variation features the movie logo, but modified with the words "DISTRIBUTED BY WARNER BROS." above the shield. This was also used for the beginning of Freejack.
- July 19, 2000-January 19, 2001: Only the words "DISTRIBUTED BY" appear above the shield; the "WARNER BROS. PICTURES" text is redone. Some releases like Get Carter and Miss Congeniality have the banner reading simply "WARNER BROS.". Also added is the URL byline, www.warnerbros.com, below the owner disclaimer. There is also the print closing logo, but it's very rare and was seen on Invictus.
FX/SFX: None, except for the "PRESENTS" text fading in on the original Warner Communications variation.
Music/Sounds: In most cases, silent or the beginning of the movie's theme is used. For some of their first features (such as Gremlins), a loud and majestic horn sounder (a classic WB fanfare) is heard.
Music/Sounds Variant: On 90s prints of How Sweet It Is!, the logo is accompanied with the National General fanfare (the original distributors of the film).
Availability: Very common. The 1992 logo is the easiest to find, as it is usually the one that plasters older logos. WB has eased up on this somewhat, and older logos have been seen more often in recent years on newer prints/masters. The "PRESENTS" version can be found on National Lampoon's European Vacation and Gremlins, with the latter being the first film to have this logo (also featuring the classic WB fanfare). The one with the Warner Communications byline can be found on the 1997 DVD release of National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (2002 DVD has the 1999 logo) and TCM's print of The Goodbye Girl, but is not as easy to spot as the 1992 logo, as many DVDs and Encore/Starz prints have it plastered with the Time Warner Entertainment byline such as on the DVD of Pee-wee's Big Adventure or even with the next logo below (occurs on the Police Academy films and Moving). This variant unfortunately plasters the 6th logo on the 1990s Elvis Presley Charro! VHS. Even the 1990 Time Warner byline has been plastered on 1990-92 films with the next logo on most of Encore's prints. The logo is plastered by the 1985 Warner Home Video logo (w/ Time Warner Entertainment byline) on a 90s VHS release of Razorback. The movie ending variation can be seen on films such as Gremlins 2: The New Batch, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Thumbelina, A Troll in Central Park, Twister, and Conspiracy Theory. Strangely, the logo does not appear on the 1985 film Ladyhawke (a co-production with 20th Century Fox). A silent version of the "PRESENTS" version can be seen (in color) on the 1989 VHS of Bugs Bunny in King Arthur's Court and (in black and white) on TCM's broadcast of the 1958 film Onionhead, followed by a black & white "Big W" closing logo at the end, and the 2003 Warner Bros. Television logo in color after that. The logo premiered on (as mentioned above) Gremlins and made its final appearance on The Pledge. The distribution variant plastered the Buena Vista Pictures Distribution in-credit notice on international theatrical prints of films from Walt Disney Pictures, Touchstone Pictures, and Hollywood Pictures between 1988 and 1993, including Oliver & Company, and started closing films from its own company circa 1990. Don't expect to see this on most CBS Theatrical Films releases of this time, though it does appear at the start of the CBS/Fox Video release of Grandview, U.S.A. (without "PRESENTS").
Scare Factor: None. The shield's grand return was a pretty big letdown to haters of the "W" logo, and you might be annoyed at how often you see it.
(January 16, 1998- )
Nicknames: "CGI Shield", "Shield in the Sky II", "WB Shield VIII", "CGI WB Shield", "75 Years of Warner Bros."
Logo: A picture of the Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank, CA is seen with a gold tint. The picture "ripples" slowly for a bit and then rotates, revealing that it is the WB shield, redone in CGI and reflecting the studio. The cloud background is more computer generated. The logo rotates towards us and zooms out to its usual position, with the company byline fading in underneath.
Trivia: This logo was created by Intralink Film Graphic Design.
- January 16, 1998-January 19, 2001: "A TIME WARNER ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY"
- February 2, 2001-September 12, 2003: "An AOL Time Warner Company"
- November 5-December 5, 2003: "A Time Warner Company"
- December 12, 2003-: "A TimeWarner Company" (with "TimeWarner" in its own logo font)
- January 16-December 18, 1998: For this logo's first year, when the shield is zooming out to a more further position, "75" and "YEARS" appear from behind the shield and move away to surround it. "Entertaining The World" fades in underneath followed by the Time Warner Entertainment byline in white and in a different typeface. Also, the background is slightly enhanced, and the shield has slightly different lighting.
- A somewhat enhanced WB shield in 3D was spotted on NASCAR 3D: The IMAX Experience, Clash of the Titans, Hubble 3D, Born to Be Wild 3D, 3D international releases of Beowulf, and recent prints of Avalanche Express (the latter two were presented in scope). The animation revealing the shield is quicker, the flash reflection on the banner when the shield is revealed is not as bright, the inside of the shield is a brighter blue, the banner around the shield is shinier, the cloud background is further back, and the shield zooms out further more.
- A version of the logo exists in which Bugs Bunny walks from the shield, does a Vanna pose, and eats a carrot, but the banner still reads "WARNER BROS. PICTURES". This version was used for Warner Bros. Family Entertainment for a short time.
- Starting with Dolphin Tale, the shield is sleeker, the banner is shinier, the byline is orange-yellow, and the animation revealing the shield is enhanced.
- 1998-January 19, 2001, March 5, 2004: Same as the previous logo.
- February 2, 2001- : This closing logo features the 1984 shield with the banner inscription updated to match that of the current opening logo; the words "Distributed by" appear over the shield with the URL address underneath the byline. This is pretty much a modified version of the 2001 Warner Bros. Television logo.
FX/SFX: Very nice CGI! The rippling effect may remind you of a rock plopping through the pond.
- January 16-December 18, 1998: The original 75th Anniversary version of this logo used a wind-blowing chime tune.
- February 12, 1999- : An 8-note piano tune that builds into a powerful, moving fanfare, based on the theme from Casablanca, "As Time Goes By".
- In other cases, it uses the opening theme of the movie from a soundtrack or silence.
- On the Warner Archive DVD release of Avalanche Express, the logo is seen with the 1935 20th Century Fox fanfare! This error was because Lorimar produced this film with Fox having North American theatrical distribution. WB would gain rights to the film when they purchased the Lorimar library in 1989. On the print used for the DVD, they might have accidentally left the Fox logo and quickly edited the logo out, thus explaining one of the worst plastering jobs in the history of logos!
- On current prints and HBO airings of The Negotiator, the 2003 version of this logo with the TimeWarner byline uses the wind-blowing chime fanfare from the original 75th Anniversary version. The 1999 DVD and 2009 Blu-ray retain their original 75th Anniversary logo.
Availability: Very common. It's seen on most WB films from 1998 onward. Several classic films, including Superman II, The Exorcist, Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior, Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, and Return of the Living Dead Part II have had their old logos plastered with this one in lieu of the "Shield of Staleness", though this one is mainly found on the most recent releases. In most cases, the logo uses music, especially post-2001 when the AOL Time Warner byline version was used. The one with the AOL Time Warner byline can be found on pre-2003 films like Exit Wounds, Scooby-Doo, and The Powerpuff Girls Movie among others. It premiered on Fallen and has been in near-continuous use ever since.
Scare Factor: None. It's held up remarkably well over the past seventeen years it's been used.
(January 28, 2011- )
See New Line Cinema page for the info.
(February 7, 2014- )
See the Warner Animation Group page for info.
Here is some information about the copyright stamps on the Warner Bros. films:
- 1923-1967: Copyright © by Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
- 1934-1936: Copyright © by Warner Bros. Productions Corp.
- 1926-1960 :Copyright © by The Vitaphone Corp. (short subjects only)
- 1967-1970: Copyright © by Warner Bros.-Seven Arts, Inc.
- 1970-1992: Copyright © by Warner Bros., Inc.
- 1992-2003: Copyright © by Warner Bros.
- 2003-: Copyright © by Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.
Click here for logo variations.