DNA Productions

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum



Background

DNA Productions was an animation company founded in 1987 by John A. Davis and Keith Alcorn. Its most successful project was the film Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius and its animated spin-off show for Nickelodeon. DNA closed down in 2006, following the box office disappointment of The Ant Bully. Many of its employees went to work for Reel FX Creative Studios, while others went to O Entertainment to work at its recently formed animation division, Omation. The company has its name not to be confused with the British film company DNA Films.



1st Logo (July 10, 1992-1994)



Visuals: On a white background, three people (Keith Alcorn on the left, an unknown person in the middle, and John A. Davis on the right) are seen with quirky expressions on their faces; they look somewhat distorted (likely mirrored). The pictures are all in boxes and in grayscale. Copyright information is seen below.

Variants:

  • In 1993, the picture was changed to three people (John A. Davis on the left, Keith Alcorn in the middle, and an unknown person on the right; it could be Paul Claerhout, who voiced the 9th logo) with vivid expressions while the photo is distorted.
  • There are "Presents" variants.
  • On the Nanna & Lil' Puss Puss Show VHS tape from Expanded Entertainment, the people are replaced with an animated credits sequence, which goes like this: Lil' Puss Puss constantly hiccupping and Nanna trying to shush him throughout the credits. Puss Puss then tries to hold the hiccups in, expanding his head until it explodes, with blood covering Nanna in the process as she too begins hiccupping. Copyright information appears above.
  • On the Nanna & Lil' Puss Puss short "The Honeymoonies", the people are replaced with a static, highly detailed image of Puss Puss holding up Nanna's disembodied head (with her face frozen in a horrified expression with her tongue sticking out, her spine being visible and a pool of blood underneath her head) and presenting it with his other hand as he smiles. Copyright information is seen below.
  • A rare filmed version of the "Down Beat Dowager" variant exists. It can be seen on the Spike and Mike’s Sick and Twisted Festival of Animation Volume One VHS.

Trivia: The same splattering sound effect heard on the VHS variant is used in the 2nd Cartoon Network Productions logo on some Space Ghost Coast to Coast episodes.

Technique: Digitally drawn animation.

Audio: The end theme of the short, performed by The Oral Fixations.

Audio Variants:

  • On the Nanna & Lil' Puss Puss short "Off the Record", the vocals are backmasked. When the music ends and fades out, it then fades back in and ends with a broken glass sound effect.
  • The VHS variant uses a fiddle version of the theme composed by Paul Claerhout (used in the shorts as background music), which is accompanied by various sound effects that correspond to the actions displayed on screen.
  • On the short "The Honeymoonies", the audio is very slightly higher-pitched.
  • On the short "Down Beat Dowager", a rock song is played instead, which is a hard rock rendition of the ending theme, also performed by The Oral Fixations.

Availability: Seen on Nanna and Lil' Puss Puss which has not aired since the 2000s. The only way to see these shorts is online.

2nd Logo (June 7, 1994)


Visuals: There is a road with cacti spread about it on the sides. The camera zooms into a drive-in theater, with large signs depicting "The Demo: Now Showing On Screen 1". Once it fully zooms into a screen, there is an animated pegasus flying in the air as normal. Helix the Cat (who looks rough) flies by using his tails as a propeller and the pegasus looks at him for a moment. Helix motions toward the audience in a pose that seems like he's going to whisper to them as he flies offscreen. Suddenly, the pegasus is in shock and it crashes into a giant rock formation, with the big letters "DNA" carved into it. The camera slowly pans out. The text "DNA" in a white Times New Roman font is seen at the bottom left of the screen throughout the entire logo.

Technique: A combination of CGI and traditional animation.

Audio: The sound of wind blowing as the screen zooms down the road, followed by an excerpt from Tchaikovsky's "Piano Concerto #1" which plays throughout the animation of the pegasus flying with the sound of Helix's tails propelling. This becomes distorted once the pegasus flies into the giant rock. A final, triumphant chord (which almost sounds like the beginning note of the USSR/Russian anthem) plays as the rock structure is revealed.

Availability: Alongside the 3rd-6th logos and the prototype variant of the 7th, it appears as a bumper on the same Nana and Lil' Puss Puss VHS that houses the VHS variant of the 1st logo.

3rd Logo (June 7, 1994)


Visuals: On a background that looks like a multicolored light's rays and an abstract, multi-sided, pointy shape, there is a green pencil sketch turn from a "D" into an "N" and finally into an "A".

Technique: Traditional animation.

Audio: A fast, dramatic piano piece.

Availability: See 2nd logo.

4th Logo (June 7, 1994)


Visuals: Just three pieces of paper being crumpled over and over, each saying the letters "D", "N", and "A".

Technique: Stop-motion.

Audio: A gurgling sound, spitting, and a burp.

Availability: See 2nd logo.

5th Logo (June 7, 1994)


Visuals: On a grey brick background with a lens flare, a lime-colored spotlight is centered on the multicolored text "DNA?", which spins around.

Technique: CGI.

Audio: A quirky, fast-paced woodwind theme.

Availability: See 2nd logo.

6th Logo (June 7, 1994)


Visuals: Three weird shapes place themselves by shape on a textured floor and morph into the word "DNA" by letter. The letters are also textured.

Technique: CGI.

Audio: Two people shout "Yay! Boo! Yay!" alternating between letters as each letter appears. The stock sound effect also appears in the 1944 Walt Disney short Hockey Homicide, in the Space Ghost Coast to Coast episode "Sequel", and in the 1993 educational computer game Thinkin' Things.

Availability: See 2nd logo.

7th Logo (June 7, 1994-September 7, 1998)


Visuals: Inside a red-orange circle on a very dark red background, there is a purple cat (nicknamed Helix) with two tails looking like DNA and a big pink human-like nose, wearing a white lab coat with a purple bowtie on it, from the back. In a circle around the circle containing the creature, there is the pink text "DNA PRODUCTIONS INC." in a cartoony font. He then turns his head to look at us, and jumps to face the camera while holding his arms out. The text shines.

Variant: A prototype version of the logo featured a black background, red, puffy text, and a rougher version of Helix having an even more unfriendly appearance. He simply raises his finger in the air and adorns a Cheshire Cat grin. Helix is also contained within a solid, blue circle.

Technique: Digital ink-and-paint animation. For the prototype, a mix of cel animation with computer graphics.

Audio:

  • The best way to describe the noises heard is two series of echoing, bouncy, high-pitched, distorted "guitar notes", followed by an echoing beat, and a loud, echoing "SPROING" sound as Helix finishes his jump.
  • The prototype had a stock high-pitched "phone-voice" sound, which is actually a sped-up soundclip of a female voice saying "Uh-huh, you wish to see me, señor? We wish to see the señorita's tourist and his daughter. I do not think a common door name will...".

Availability:

  • For the prototype variant, see the 2nd logo.
  • The final variant can be seen on the 1998 Jimmy Neutron pilot "Runaway Rocketboy", which can be found on the Confusion Fusion DVD.
  • This doesn't appear on the extremely obscure video series Jingaroo (which has the Beckett Entertainment logo instead and was considered lost media until "The Fool Moon and Other Stories" was uploaded to YouTube) or Olive, the Other Reindeer.

8th Logo (March 28, 1995)

Visuals: On a black background, the screen zooms out to see an atom with moving circles in 3 colors: red, blue and yellow. There is the text "DNA Productions".

Technique: CGI.

Audio: None.

Availability: Only seen on Elroy's Toy.

9th Logo (July 20, 2002-November 25, 2006)


Visuals: On a tropical background complete with a beach and a sunset, there is the black, lowercase text "d n a productions" with "d n a" bigger and spaced and "productions" underneath, near the top of the screen, and three double helix coconut trees twisting behind an atom-like bush. A small house can be seen at the bottom left of the screen. We then see a chimpanzee, named Paul, pop up from behind the trees and in front of the bush with his back turned to us. He then turns around, revealing that he has three eyes in the process, and he waves at us while saying "Hi, I'm Paul!".

Trivia: Paul is named after (and voiced by) Paul Claerhout, one of DNA's first three employees.

Variants: There are six variants of the normal logo. They can be seen on certain episodes of The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, and the following are listed below:

  • Double Your Pleasure: Two Pauls appear and say "Hi, we're Paul!". Seen on the half-hour special "The Junkman Cometh".
  • Bi-Lingual Paul: Paul is wearing a (barely visible) hat and a mustache, when he turns around, he says "¡Hola, soy Pablo!", which means "Hi, I'm Pablo!" in Spanish. The mustache falls off at the last second. Seen on "The Mighty Wheezers"/"Billion Dollar Boy," "El Magnifico"/"Best in Show," and the CGI Nanna and Lil' Puss Puss theme song music video.
  • Backwards Masking Paul: The logo is played in reverse, making Paul sounding like he's saying "Oh, my eye!" (he's actually saying "Hi, I'm Paul!" backwards). Seen on "Foul Bull"/"The Science Fair Affair".
    • When reversed, Paul's line appears to be a different take.
  • Paul Blooper #1: Paul forgets his lines, and says "So what do you want me to say now?" Seen on the hour-long special "Attack of the Twonkies".
  • Paul Blooper #2: Paul forgets his lines again, and says "Hi, I'm... line?". Seen on the half-hour special "My Big Fat Spy Wedding".
  • Coffee Break Paul: Paul is missing. A man off-screen says softly, "Paul?". Seen on the half-hour special "Men at Work".

Technique: CGI done by O Entertainment using Alias Wavefront Maya.

Audio: A happy tropical xylophone sounder ("Mexican Jumping Bean", from the Sound Ideas library), with tropical birds and insects in the background for the original variant. Paul's voice is an innocent, high-pitched male voice in (apparently) a southern accent; provided by Paul Claerhout.

Audio Trivia: "Mexican Jumping Bean" was first used in the 1994 Macintosh game Ants Afire, as well as the Junior Field Trips game Let's Explore the Jungle, as one of the actions when the cobra is clicked on, and it is also the default "operation finished" sound in the burning program Imgburn and DVD Decryptor (developed by the same team).

Audio Variant: On foreign language dubs of Jimmy Neutron, the audio would be dubbed; one example is Russian, where Paul says, "Привет, я Пол!".

Availability: This appeared on all episodes of The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius (though it does not appear on early prints of some early episodes of the said show) and The Jimmy Timmy Power Hour trilogy. It also appeared on the early Nickelodeon airings of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, using the logo combo from the show itself; current airings on Nickelodeon have the variants replaced by the normal version. This logo doesn't appear on the 2006 film The Ant Bully, as that film used an in-credit notice instead.

Legacy: This is seen as nostalgic among Jimmy Neutron fans. It is also one of the most "memed" logos on the wiki.