Focus Features

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Background

Focus Features is the current indie/arthouse film subsidiary of Universal Studios, which was formed in 2002 by the merging of USA Films, Universal Focus, Good Machine, and its folded endeavors (Rogue, October Films, Gramercy Pictures, and Interscope Communications). The label specializes in independent and foreign films as well as other genre titles.

The Interscope Communications name continued to be used under films planned for the label, but instead used for Focus Features until 2003. In 2004, Focus revived Rogue as a genre-specific subsidiary of horror, thriller, African-American, high suspense and action. Ten years later, the label acquired FilmDistrict and absorbed it shortly after. A year following, Focus revived Gramercy Pictures as a full on film label, but dissolved it again in 2016 following the box office failure of Ratchet & Clank.

As of 2013, Focus Features is a subsidiary of the Universal Pictures section of NBCUniversal, which in turn, is a division of Comcast.

1st Logo (August 16-November 8, 2002)


Visuals: On a black background, one by one, there is a light revealing each of the five letters of the text "F O C U S", with the "O" slightly out-of-focus, and under it is "FEATURES", all in white. The light emits a shadow behind the logo of what it just revealed.

Technique: 2D computer animation.

Audio: None.

Availability: Can be seen on Possession, 8 Women, and Far from Heaven.

2nd Logo (December 25, 2002-)


Visuals: There are various yellow, green, and blue circles (all out-of-focus) moving about, then the text from before (in yellow) fades in.

Variants:

  • For international releases, "INTERNATIONAL" would be shown underneath.
  • At the end of some movies (and on the start of The Northman), the print logo is used. It looks rather similar to the last logo.
  • On YouTube prints of The Man Who Wasn't There, the logo is in black and white (followed by the USA Films logo).
  • On the American release of The World's End, the animation is slowed down in order to plaster the Universal Pictures logo.
  • Starting in 2015 with the trailer for Suffragette, the Comcast byline was added underneath. This also applies to the ending print logo.
  • In 2022, when Focus Features celebrated its 20th anniversary, the logo (in a slightly different font) was moved down to make room for a big number "20" with "YEARS" inside the 0.

Technique: 2D computer animation by Devastudios.

Audio: A calm 2-note string theme composed by Gregory Hainer and Michael A. Reagan. On some of their early films, this theme is accompanied by the sounds of children laughing and birds twittering. Otherwise, it's either silence or the opening theme of the movie.

Availability:

  • This was first seen on the American release of The Pianist and can be seen on films from the company ever since, such as Brokeback Mountain, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Somewhere, 9, and Blockparty.
  • The 20th Anniversary variant only appeared on an anniversary reel and did not appear on any movie.
  • It also plasters the Gramercy Pictures logo on newer prints of their films (ie. Mallrats), and it plastered the Savoy Pictures logo on an AMC airing of A Bronx Tale.
USA Films
Universal Focus
Good Machine
FilmDistrict
Focus Features
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