Amblin Entertainment

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Amblin Entertainment is a production company founded by Steven Spielberg, Kathleen Kennedy, and Frank Marshall (the latter two of whom went on to form their own company, The Kennedy/Marshall Company, in 1991) in 1981. Named after a short film titled Amblin' (1968; which Spielberg also directed), its logo features the silhouette of the titular character E.T. riding in the basket of Elliott's bicycle flying in front of the moon, from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, in which they are the company's official mascots.

1st Logo (June 8, 1984-)

Visuals: A print version of the Amblin logo in white, with an inverse silhouette of Elliott and E.T. flying in front of the moon (represented by an outline) and "AMBLIN" to the right in a font known as Optima.


  • On Gremlins, the color scheme used is the same as the standard logo, but with the "moon" colored blue; "AN" is above the logo, and "PRESENTATION" is below it.
    • A similar variant appears on West Side Story (2021), but with the moon colored white.
  • Starting in 2019 with Men in Black: International, the silhouette of Elliott and E.T. has been updated to match the current onscreen logo, with the cape being redrawn and more accurate. It looks less like a chicken riding a bicycle.
  • On Men in Black II, the logo is thicker. "ENTERTAINMENT" is also in a different font.
  • On Fandango, the logo scrolls up over the ending scene of the film.

Technique: A still image, with scrolling effects on some occasions.

Audio: None or the ending music from any given soundtrack.

Availability: It debuted on Gremlins and can also be seen on Fandango, all four Men in Black films, The Mask of Zorro, and West Side Story (2021).

2nd Logo (June 7, 1985-August 8, 2014)

Visuals: There is a close-up of the moon, which zooms backward until it is on the left side of the screen. Right before the moon stops in its place, the silhouette of a young boy on a bicycle with an alien in its basket (Elliott and E.T. from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial) slowly flies in front of the moon from the left side of the moon's border, stopping in the middle (even when the bicycle stops, the wheels continue to move). At the same time, two orange/blue stripes move in from both sides of the screen. The stripe that comes in from the bottom left side places itself right underneath the moon, while the stripe that comes in from the top right side places itself near the top of the moon (this creates a small space to the right of the moon bordered by the stripes on the top and the bottom). When the moon and stripes are in place, the word "AMBLIN" (once again, in Optima) appears in a strange fade-in (shadows form the blue letters one at a time, referred to as a "shadow wipe"/"refracting prism"). When the word "AMBLIN" is finally revealed, the wheels begin to stop and smaller orange text appears under the bottom orange/blue lines that reads "ENTERTAINMENT" in spaced out letters to fit the width of the bottom line. Both words are in a similar thin font.

Moon Colors:

  • Earlier films, such as The House With a Clock in its Walls: Flat blue.
  • Later films: Realistic white.


  • The stripes and the text color saturations can vary depending on the film.
  • A shorter version shows the moon and stripes in place without animation, and it just shows the fade in of the company name, as well as the wheels turning. This version first appeared on both The Making of The Money Pit and Who Framed Roger Rabbit, and made its last appearance on Catch Me If You Can.
  • On some movies such as The Goonies, Joe Versus the Volcano, as well as Cape Fear and Hook (both released together in 1991), A Far Off Place and Twister (all being shot and released in 2.35:1 for anamorphic Panavision), as well as early ITV airings of Back to the Future Part III and The Flintstones, the moon is flipped backwards. Full screen versions of some of these movies (e.g. the 2001 VHS release of The Goonies) use the normal variant on certain prints instead.
  • A still version is seen at the end of War Horse, Lincoln, and The Hundred-Foot Journey (the final movie to use this logo; with the closing theme), as well as being used as a television logo.
  • A black & white version of the logo exists, which appears at the end of Hereafter.
  • A medium-length version is known to exist on the original trailer of We're Back!: A Dinosaur's Story, with the logo starting in the middle of its formation and also having the entire name fade in at once.
  • On Dad, the logo fades in after the credits roll.
  • On 4:3 full screen prints of later films from 2005 until 2014, starting with The Legend of Zorro, the logo zooms out to a much farther distance than usual. This is because the letters were shot and released in 2.35:1 (anamorphic Panavision), similar to the flipped moon variant used for all six films and framed for 2.39:1 scope.
  • On the ending of Memoirs of a Geisha, it starts with the stripes positioning.
  • On Прятки и Q The Making of The Money Pit, after the logo forms, the copyright notice which reads "copyright ©1986 Amblin Entertainment and Universal Studios" fades in at the bottom of the screen.

Technique: Traditional animation.

Audio: A light orchestral theme composed by John Williams. This was used on Young Sherlock Holmes, The Color Purple, The Money Pit, and the 1987 theatrical reissue (as well as the 1988 VHS and the 2012/2017 Blu-ray/DVD releases) of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.

Audio Variant: Usually, the logo is silent or has the film's closing score.

Availability: The flipped moon variant debuted at the end of The Goonies, while the normal variant debuted at the end of Back to the Future, and can be found on almost every 1985-2014 Ambiln film with the final one being The Hundred-Foot Journey.

  • Despite being retired after the aforementioned film, this logo also appeared on The House with a Clock in Its Walls, fitting with the retro theme.
  • It is also seen at the end of the 1986 TV movie Amazing Stories: The Movie II.
  • This logo also does not appear on Schindler's List, The Bridges of Madison County, Deep Impact, Small Soldiers, In Dreams, Minority Report, Flags of Our Fathers, Letters from Iwo Jima, all three Amblimation productions (for this t one is because it featured that company's special logo) and on most prints of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, despite it showing the logo on the packaging (However, it does appear at the end of the movie on its 1987 theatrical reissue, the 1988 VHS release and the 2012/2017 Blu-ray/DVD release, and also appears on ABC Family/Freeform's print of the film).

Legacy: A favorite of many, especially for fans of Spielberg's films.

3rd Logo (June 12, 2015-)

Visuals: Same concept as before, only CGI is used, and the moon and silhouette are three-dimensional. The moon swooshes down and hovers to the left of the screen, while Elliot and E.T. fly on the screen from behind, making an immediate right in front of the moon and parking to form the graphic. Also, the word "AMBLIN" no longer has the strange shadow wipe effect, and instead uses a more gradual fade-in from the left, and the rest of the logo (the orange and blue bars and "ENTERTAINMENT", which, along with "AMBLIN", now have texture on the logo) fades in. The finishing background is now red-gradient black (evening sky). If you look closely, you can see E.T.'s finger glowing.


  • On Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous, there is a custom variation, where it picks off where the Universal Pictures/DreamWorks Animation Television logo combo left off; we pan to the left of the DreamWorks logo-shaped continent to reveal an Amblin logo-shaped archipelago, where the camera then zooms underneath Elliot's cape to start the show.
  • On The Fabelmans, the logo's animation starts over the Universal Pictures logo, but it fades to its background when the logo is nearly done forming.
  • On The BFG (the offical debut of the logo with the theme), the sky is completely black.
  • On A Dog's Purpose, the short version of the Universal Pictures logo crossfades to the abridged finishing animation of the logo.
  • On Finch, there is an enhanced version of the logo. The moon is blue, just like the 1985 logo, used on earlier classic films. Also, the "AMBLIN" text is more three-dimensional and sleeker than usual.

Technique: CGI.

Audio: The second half of the orchestral theme from the previous logo.

Audio Variants:

  • Mostly, the opening theme of the movie plays.
  • Sometimes, the logo is silent.
  • On The Fabelmans, the tail end of the 2012 Universal Pictures fanfare plays over the logo.


  • It debuted on Jurassic World and has appeared on all Amblin films since (except for The House with a Clock in Its Walls, which used the previous logo).
  • The version with the theme debuted on The BFG.
  • This logo also does not appear on The Post.
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