Columbia Pictures Home Entertainment

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Columbia Pictures Home Entertainment was established in November 1979 by Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc., to distribute films from Columbia Pictures on VHS, Beta, LaserDisc, and Super 8mm, with Warner Bros. titles being released by them on the latter format. It was later renamed as "RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video" (or "RCA/Columbia Pictures International Video" for international distribution, "RCA/Columbia Pictures/Hoyts Video" (in conjunction with Hoyts) in Australia and "Gaumont Columbia RCA Video" (in conjunction with Gaumont) in France) in 1981 as a joint venture with RCA.

Logo (November 1979-November 1982)

Visuals: It's the same as the Columbia Pictures "Sunburst" theatrical logo, but at the end, it freezes frames just after "Columbia Pictures", which is blacked out and replaced by the chyroned in words below, arranged like this:

All are written in a white Cooper Black font.


  • There is a black and white version of this logo seen on classic Columbia movies and shorts in B&W.
  • The end will vary from video to video, with it fading to black in one version while another cuts to black.
  • The Bridge on the River Kwai and Easy Rider have a shortened version that starts with the sunburst, similar to the Columbia Pictures Pay Television logo and has the text more obviously chyroned in, in a white Helvetica font with a gray drop shadow.

Technique: Motion-controlled cel animation by Robert Abel & Associates, with the Torch Lady and backdrop being a matte painting, and the text chyroned over the Columbia Pictures name.

Audio: The 1976 Columbia Pictures theme by Suzanne Ciani, though some releases have it distorted.


  • Columbia TriStar Home Video kept this logo on the '90s VHS releases of Monty Python and the Holy Grail (in print as late as 2000), It's My Turn, Cat Ballou, and The Three Stooges Vol. 3: An Ache in Every Stake (making its appearances on all four after a Columbia TriStar Home Video logo), and it also made an appearance on the mid-'80s reprint video releases of those and many others originally released before 1983, including Midnight Express, Bye Bye Birdie, The Taming of the Shrew, And Justice for All, The China Syndrome, The Three Stooges Vol. 1: A Bird in the Head, and The Three Stooges Vol. 2: Micro-Phonies, due to them using older tape masters.
  • It can also be found on Columbia's 1970s clamshell releases, including Midnight Express, Gilda, Born Free, The Taming of the Shrew, A Man for All Seasons, Breakout, The New Centurions, The Deep, Bye Bye Birdie, You Light Up My Life, and the original Fun with Dick and Jane. This logo also appeared on early to mid-1980s video prints of UPA's Gerald McBoing Boing and Mr. Magoo cartoons.
  • The black-and-white version appears on classic Columbia titles in black-and-white, including Knock on Any Door and Gilda among others. Starting in late 1981, videocassettes of Columbia Pictures films go straight to the logo used at the time (a practice that lasted until 1989).
  • There are also some sports specials and non-Columbia Pictures material that contain this logo, such as the 1982 VHS of The Batty World of Baseball.
  • The last videocassettes to use this logo include Hanover Street (itself a Columbia film), To Forget Venice, and the aforementioned Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
  • With few known exceptions (namely, Cat Ballou, The Three Stooges Vol. 2: Micro-Phonies, The Three Stooges Vol. 3: An Ache in Every Stake, and Easy Rider, the latter which plastered its own Columbia logo with the RCA/Columbia logo later on), this always plastered the Columbia Pictures logo on Columbia Pictures material where this appeared.
Columbia Pictures Home Entertainment
RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video
RCA/Columbia Pictures International Video
RCA/Columbia Pictures/Hoyts Video Pty. Ltd.
Gaumont Columbia RCA Video
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