CBS Theatrical Films

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


CBS Theatrical Films was the second and short-lived film production arm of CBS, active from 1979 to 1985. The studio's films were distributed primarily by Warner Bros. Pictures and select films by Embassy Films Associates. Paramount Pictures (since 2000) owns the rights to the studio's films. The studio did not use a logo until 1981.

1st Logo (March 13, 1981-July 23, 1982)

Visuals: On a bluish-black gradient background, from the lower-right corner, the giant capital letters (in silver) "CBS" rise up with solid trails on the bottom. As they turn around, the trails "retract" to normal, while the font turns to black. Then the words "THEATRICAL FILMS" (in white) fade in below "CBS". The screen then cuts either to black or to the opening of the movie.

Technique: CGI designed by Information International, Inc.

Audio: A majestic-sounding fanfare, with some synthesized noises (similar to the 1982 Vestron Video logo). On The Challenge, it's silent.

Availability: Seen only on Back Roads and The Challenge. This logo was also shown in Information International's 1982 demo reel.

2nd Logo (February 18, 1983-November 8, 1985)

Visuals: On a black background, there are two lines going to the center. When they crash, there is a big explosion forming lots of white stars, then the screen zooms out and we see three white stars. Below the three stars, C, B, and S zoom out, one by one. A laser light turns the whole thing 3-D and wipes in "THEATRICAL FILMS". The logo shines.


  • On some films, the logo starts when the three white stars are already there.
  • On trailers, a shortened variant with the logo completely formed exists.

Technique: CGI.

Audio: None, but on Grandview U.S.A. a synth-guitar tune and a dark bang with 3 synth-zaps was used.

Availability: The standard version can be seen on Grandview U.S.A. and American Dreamer, while the shortened versions can be found on earlier film releases such as Table for Five and Finders Keepers. It's been suggested you can tell which WB logo preceded this one originally just by whether the standard or shortened version of this logo appears.

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