Netflix Originals

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum



Background

Netflix is an American video streaming service founded on August 29, 1997 as a DVD-by-mail service. In addition to offering movies and TV shows from a variety of companies, Netflix also offers original content such as House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and BoJack Horseman, as well as international shows and continuations of cancelled series.



1st Logo (August 19-October 14, 2005)

Visuals: An in-credit notice with the text "Produced in Association with" and the 2001 Netflix logo on the bottom.

Variant: Starting with episode 2, the Netflix logo on the bottom is squeezed.

Technique: A still, digital graphic.

Audio: The end theme of the show.

Availability: Only known to be seen on Hopeless Pictures.

Legacy: This is the only production logo from Netflix that was used before it became a streaming service.

2nd Logo (In-credit variants) (January 25, 2012-)


Visuals: Technically, this is just in-credit text that reads "A NETFLIX ORIGINAL SERIES" or "A NETFLIX SERIES".

Variants: There are many custom versions of this logo.

Technique: Depends on the variant.

Audio: Depends on the variant.

Availability:

  • Seen on the first seasons of Lilyhammer, House of Cards, Hemlock Grove, and Orange Is the New Black.
  • Still used on its current and then-new shows, and newer shows such as Go! Go! Cory Carson also use it. Also seen on Glitter Force (the English dub of Smile PreCure!) and exclusive international shows.
  • On international and linear TV airings of their originals, this and the fifth and sixth logos are usually removed. However, this and the 5th logo were retained on The Magic School Bus Rides Again when it aired on Qubo up to its shutdown.
  • This was also originally seen on the Marvel Television shows co-produced with Netflix, but the Disney+ prints of these shows since 2022 has this and any mention of Netflix, including on the opening credits, edited out.

3rd Logo (December 24, 2013-April 4, 2014)


Visuals: On a black background, a shadow appears. Then, a red square with the word "NETFLIX" (with an arc shape at the bottom of the word) fades in, and it slowly zooms in.

Technique: 2D animation.

Audio: None.

Availability:

  • Seen on the first ten episodes of Turbo FAST and the second season of House of Cards.
  • This does not appear on the US release of Leo the Lion, as it only uses The Weinstein Company logo instead.

4th Logo (2013-2014)


Visuals: On a red background, the letters of the 2001 Netflix logo (in CGI and in 3D) turn to face the viewer. Some text which varies based on the genre is below:

  • Comedy - "COMEDY" or "A NETFLIX COMEDY SPECIAL"
  • Documentaries - "A NETFLIX DOCUMENTARY"
  • Original series - "ORIGINALS"

Technique: CGI.

Audio: None or the closing theme of the show.

Availability: The documentary variant was seen on documentaries such as The Short Game. The comedy variant was seen on Netflix comedies such as Marc Maron: Thinky Pain and Mike Birbiglia: My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend, as well as the first season of Derek. The Originals variant was seen on Mako Mermaids: An H2O Adventure.

5th Logo (June 6, 2014-February 1, 2019)


Visuals: On a white gradient background, the letters of the white word "NETFLIX" (with an arc shape at the bottom of the word, like the previous logo, but in a different font) pop up one-by-one, leaving shadows. Then, the letters lower one-by-one, the shadows shrink, and the logo turns 2D and red as it zooms out and stops.

Trivia:

  • The "TUDUM" sound is taken from the final scene of the second season of House of Cards, in which Frank Underwood (played by Kevin Spacey) quickly knocks on his desk twice. It was created by Netflix VP of Product Todd Yellin and Oscar-winning sound editor Lon Bender. Initial plans included using the bleat of a goat as the logo's audio, parodying Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The finalized "TUDUM" sounder was made by recording the knocking of Yellin's wedding ring against a cabinet in his bedroom, a "slowed anvil sound", and a very very old electric guitar recording that was reversed so that it no longer sounds like a guitar. The onomatopoeia was adopted by Netflix as the name of a companion fan site, which launched on December 9, 2021.

Variants:

  • On trailers, either the text "ONLY ON" is above the animation with the date of the show's series or season premiere below, or the text "NOW STREAMING" would be below the animation with no additional text. In this variant, red lines that are drawing the "N" are sliding in from the right side of the screen to the left side of the screen, which followed by the "N", then later sliding in to form the Netflix logo.
  • At the end of He's All That, a still version with a black background is used.

Technique: CGI by Gretel.

Audio: Two electronic drum beats (see Trivia), followed by a synth note that holds out until the text stops zooming out. The official onomatopoeia for the soundtrack is "TUDUM" (in all caps), though some third party media outlets also use "ta-dum".[1] Otherwise, it's silent. Essentially, a slightly extended version of the sound that plays when you open Netflix on a TV.

Audio Variant: On Bright, there is sounds of electricity as the logo is formed and we hear the "TUDUM" sound as usual.

Availability: Many other Netflix original shows and movies still have this logo.

  • Seen on then-current prints of currently streaming Netflix original shows, such as House of Cards, The Magic School Bus Rides Again, Turbo FAST, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and others.
  • It strangely makes a surprise appearance at the end of He's All That following the next logo below.
  • On linear and international TV airings of their shows, this and the next logo are usually omitted. The Disney+ prints of Netflix-produced Marvel shows has this logo and any mention of Netflix removed. However, this and the second logo were retained on The Magic School Bus Rides Again when it aired on Qubo until its shutdown.
  • This also appeared on the first two seasons of Big Mouth.

Legacy: It is seen as one of the most iconic logos of the 2010s.

6th Logo (February 1, 2019-)


Visuals:

  • Short (Original Series): On a black background, the current secondary Netflix logo (the letter "N" with an arc shape at the bottom, with the middle diagonal stroke in a lighter color) draws in from the vertical stroke on the left to the vertical stroke on the right. The screen then zooms into the "N" and it soon draws out, this time as lines grouped together to form a whole. The sequence continues zooming in to the lines that made up the leftmost line of the "N" as their colors shift into various hues. The sequence continues to zoom past the lines and end on the same black background we started out on.
  • Long (Original Film): In space, a red line shoots up into the air and hundreds of different colored lines shoot down from the sky. As we pan through them, they tilt vertically and are revealed to be the inside of a bigger red line, which draws to reveal itself as the "N" from the short logo. It continues to zoom out before fading to black.

Alternate Descriptive Video Transcription:

  • Short: A red letter N unfolds into a spectrum of colors.

Trivia:

  • The logo was a part of the current brand's rollout on February 1, 2019. In the brand's rollout announcement video, it shows how the logo is being made.
  • According to a Netflix spokesperson speaking with Fast Company, the vertical lines were "inspired by the idea of turning Netflix’s own show thumbnails sideways, like records on a shelf."
  • This logo won a Bronze Clio Entertainment Award in 2019.
  • A Gold Clio Entertainment Award-winning 2022 Brazilian Netflix ad uses a remixed hip-hop version of the "TUDUM" with autotuned vocals of the word "TUDUM" throughout as its soundtrack. It also features brief visuals of the ad's protagonist falling through the lines, which ended with a reversed logo, which stopped with the "N", followed by the usual "TUDUM" sound. It can be watched here.
  • A somewhat similar concept in mind occurs in the Spanish Netflix show, Go! Live Your Way, where the opening song in the first episode incorporates the "TUDUM" sound 6 times in the first few seconds, with each "TUDUM" being faster and more closely packed together until it forms the beat of the song.

Variants: On trailers of a show or a film, the original series logo's animation, in reverse, is usually chyroned into the last part of the trailer, before the background becomes black to normal. On American releases, the MPA rating card is seen underneath the logo.

Closing Variant: A short version of the Original Film variant, with only the "N" zooming out, appears at the end of their limited theatrical releases.

Technique: CGI, designed by Imaginary Forces. A behind-the-scenes featurette can be seen on their website here and here.

Audio: For the Original Series variant, the same "TUDUM" sound effect from the previous logo. For the Original Film variant, a rising orchestral piece, ending with an orchestrated version of the traditional "TUDUM" sounder, composed by Hans Zimmer.

Audio Variants:

  • Season 4 of Stranger Things has the sounds of thunder and lightning with the usual "TUDUM" sound.
  • On A Boy Called Christmas, the Original Film variant is high-pitched and has a chorus on it.
  • On Maestro, both Rebel Moon - Part One: A Child of Fire and Part Two: The Scargiver, the opening theme plays over the Original Film variant.
  • On the season 4 Manifest episodes "Go-Around" and "Inversion Illusion", the end theme plays over.
  • Otherwise, the logo is silent.

Availability:

  • It was first seen on Russian Doll, and can be found on current and upcoming Netflix films and TV shows since.
  • It also plasters the previous logo on later prints of Netflix originals (House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, etc.).
  • Also appears on American prints of Pokémon, starting with the 23rd season Pokémon Journeys: The Series.
  • This logo gets cut out on international and linear TV airings of their originals just like the previous logo.
  • On international prints of the three films that Netflix distributed outside of the US, Wounds, Run and Mother/Android, it plasters the Hulu Originals logo.
  • In countries where the films The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run and The In Between are on the service (such as Australia and the United Kingdom), this replaces the Paramount+ Originals logo despite it being available in these countries. It also doesn't appear on Canadian prints of the former on the service, due to that film having a theatrical release in that country.
  • AMC+'s print of El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie removes this logo, and so does Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's limited DVD/Blu-ray release and AMC airings of that film.
  • It is removed on Disney+/Star's print of the 20th Century Studios film The Woman in the Window (2021); it is unknown if this also applies on the 20th Century Studios Home Entertainment home video release of the film.
  • This logo is also surprisingly retained on BabyFirst airings of Word Party and the Blu-ray and DVD releases of The Mitchells vs. the Machines, Vivo, The Man from Toronto and Roald Dahl's Matilda the Musical.
  • This is removed on the Netflix YouTube channel's print of Nimona, which was uploaded to the channel on February 19, 2024.
  • The original film variant appears on theatrical prints of some Netflix movies such as Maestro and A Boy Called Christmas.

Legacy: A generally well-liked logo, though it has gained some criticism for seeming too busy or resembling a stock YouTuber intro.

7th Logo (August 29, 2022-)


Visuals: Similar in many respects to the 5th logo. The logo zooms out through the lines as they form the "N" in a similar way to before. The "N" turns solid red and zooms out as lines "pulse" outwards to its sides. The lines to the "N"'s sides continue pulsing as it fades out to get replaced with the full "NETFLIX" text.

Variants:

  • At the end of the trailers, it shows the show or film's premiere date on Netflix before the actual logo plays as it zooms out.
  • On "The Story of Netflix", as shown here, the Netflix 25th anniversary logo is shown before the actual logo plays as it zooms out, which only shows the "N", followed by the "Are you still watching?" prompt.
  • On "Long Live the Red Envelope", as shown here, and a GIF on this part of the Imaginary Forces website, as well as Antfood's 2022 mnemonic reel, as shown here, only the "N" is shown.

Technique: CGI by Imaginary Forces.

Audio: Ambient synth "twinkling" followed by the "TUDUM". Composed by Antfood.

Availability:

  • It debuted as a 25th anniversary variant on the online anniversary video "The Story of Netflix", before making its debut on a Netflix Original with the pilot for Skull Island. It would later be used at the end of various trailers on Netflix's social media accounts. It is currently unknown whether or not this will replace the 6th logo entirely.
  • It was plastered onto the end of the February 19, 2024 YouTube print of Nimona.

Unused Logos

Logo (2016)

Visuals: On a naturalistic background, many green and brown pixels form and float together in swarms. They converge together, forming the image of Okja (from the film of the same name) leaping out of the water. The logo zooms away from her as she again turns into abstract pixels. It is revealed that what we saw was within a 3D rectangular Netflix thumbnail. Many other thumbnails with similar abstract pixels inside are surrounding it. The logo zooms out to see more and more thumbnails as a translucent Netflix "N" flies into the scene. It blocks the view of the thumbnails which shine through it, causing the "N" to resemble a skyscraper or the HBO City in the 2017 HBO Feature Presentation ident. The lights fade and the background turns black as the "N", still translucent, goes into place. "A NETFLIX FILM" appears below.

Trivia:

  • Mike Daniels conceptualized the logo as "the Netflix User Interface (panels of movies and TV shows) as a vast library of self-contained, living pixels with each movie encapsulated in one".
  • While the Okja variant was the only one that was made, the concept here is that each movie would have had a different variant of the logo.

Technique: CGI by Michael Daniels at Devastudios.

Audio: Unknown, as only style frames are available.

Availability: Unused. It can only be seen in the form of style frames on Michael Daniels' website here.

References