Island Pictures

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Island Pictures was the movie production arm of Island Records.

It was active from 1982 to 1998. After founder Chris Blackwell sold Island Records to PolyGram, he retained this studio and its library, incorporating both into his next company, Island World, which was later and also acquired by PolyGram Filmed Entertainment in 1994. Eventually, on New Year's Eve 1998, Seagram acquired PolyGram, which was later folded into its division at the time, Universal Pictures. PolyGram's music division, which owned Island Records, was also folded into the Universal Music Group, merging Island Records with that of Def Jam Recordings and birthing the Island Def Jam Music Group; on April Fools' Day 2014, UMG later disbanded the Island Def Jam Music Group, splintering both labels and its many divisions into their own factions under each wing.

Island's film library is currently held by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer; however, some films, such as The Basketball Diaries, are held by Blackwell's current company, Palm Pictures, though MGM/New Line Cinema owned TV rights to the film; MGM was acquired by online shopping giant Amazon and made a division of Amazon Studios, while New Line Cinema was made into a subsidiary of Warner Bros. Pictures, after the critical and commercial failure of 2007's The Golden Compass. Today, Warner Bros. Discovery, parent company of Warner Bros., and New Line Cinema, owns television rights to The Basketball Diaries.

1st Logo (September 10, 1982-1985)

Visuals: On a black background, a greenish-blue light rises slowly. Then it rapidly zoom in to the light, revealing a silver island with palm trees, which later glows and mirrors into two islands. Then, some stars quickly appears, illuminates the screen for less than a second, and go back to their position, revealing a shadow of the island with the blue light behind it, with the words "ISLAND PICTURES" below it.

Technique: Live-action and cel animation.

Audio: Silent at the beginning, then a whoosh when zooming in, and a dreamy tune that sounds like it was composed by Kitaro.


  • It was originally seen on the 1982 film Countryman and was also seen at the start of a SBS Australian airing thereof (preceding the distribution version of the 1997 PolyGram Television logo).
  • The Palm DVD release has the Island Alive logo instead.

2nd Logo (November 6, 1985-October 11, 1996)

Visuals: On a black background, there is a silhouette of two palm trees inside a circle. Under it, there is a line and the words "ISLAND" and "PICTURES" in a paradise-like font.


  • A variant with the logo shifted to the right, and the text in a different font was used in the early days of this logo.
  • An animated version also existed where the circle zooms back while it appears to be raining in the circle. The trees are also silver (in a similar fashion to the previous logo) while the circle zooms back. The text zooms back and a line appears. While this happens, the background turns blue.
  • On Straight to Hell, the word "PRESENTS" fades in below.

Technique: None for the regular variant. The animated version which uses live-action and 2D animation, and the Straight to Hell variant which uses fading effects for the word "PRESENTS".

Audio: Silent or the opening theme of the film.

Audio Variant: The animated version uses a sound of a waterfall, accompanied by sounds of crickets and birds chirping.


  • The earlier variant may be intact or plastered on current prints, so check various VHS, DVD releases, and TV airings for this one.
  • The later version can be found on films such as Slam Dance and Nobody's Fool, preceded by an MGM logo on DVD releases or any of the Universal logos on TV airings.
  • The animated version can be found on The Lunatic and From Hollywood to Deadwood.

3rd Logo (April 21, 1995-April 28, 1998)

Visuals: On a black background, there is a purple silhouette of a palm tree, changing to white as a red-to-yellow gradient sun slowly rises behind it. The word "ISLAND" fades in under the palm tree.

Later Variant: Starting in 1997, the byline "Just off the coast of PolyGram" (with the PolyGram logo to the right of the byline, which is in script font) appears under the logo.

Closing Variant: An in-credit print logo exists following the end credits.

Technique: 2D animation.

Audio: Either sound of the ocean or the opening theme of the film.

Audio Variant: Sometimes, it is silent.


  • Seen on How to Be a Player (not the Bounce TV airings as those have it plastered with the 2002 E.T. variant of the 1997 Universal logo instead), The Gingerbread Man, Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in The Hood, and Eddie.
  • Some releases of these films would keep this logo, or have them plastered by either the MGM, PolyGram Filmed Entertainment or Universal logos.

Cookies help us deliver our services. By using our services, you agree to our use of cookies.