Odeon Cinemas

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Odeon, stylised as ODEON, is a cinema brand name operating in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Norway, which along with UCI Cinemas and Nordic Cinema Group is part of the Odeon Cinemas Group subsidiary of AMC Theatres. It uses the famous name of the Odeon cinema circuit first introduced in the UK in 1930.

1st Logo (The First Choice) (1986-1997)

Visuals: The logo starts with the words "The First Choice" appearing quickly and successively in a neon cursive font. After a few seconds, the neon red Odeon logo appears. The camera then pans out and begins to spin around the front of a black model Odeon cinema decorated with Odeon signage and neon red light strips. It goes over the top of the cinema before revolving to the entrance, moving up slightly so that it views the "tower" segment at an angle.

Variants: There were a lot of variants that were created for this particular era:

  • Two "Feature Presentation" variants exist:
    • 1986-1997: The feature presentation variant would effectively play the logo in reverse order. The camera starts looking up at the Odeon sign from the entrance and it then revolves back to the sign where "The First Choice" is replaced with "OUR FEATURE PRESENTATION" through a left-to-right wipe. The words "OUR FEATURE PRESENTATION" have a neon blue bar both above and below.
    • 1989-1997: The sequence begins with the Odeon logo already on screen with two neon blue bars below it. "The First Choice" then appears between the bars in time with the 1989 soundtrack, with the bars disappearing after the word "Choice" appears. The rest of the logo is the same as the 1986 version.
  • Sometimes, the words "SHOWING NEXT" would appear in a cursive font on the "tower" segment as soon as the camera stops. "SHOWING" is in orange while "NEXT" is in white.
    • In the 1989 version, this was omitted and replaced with the words "SHOWING SOON", which appeared in a neon white bold font on the bottom right of the screen. In both versions, the announcer would say "Welcome to The First Choice".
  • Some break bumpers consisted of the neon cursive words "SHOWING NOW" or "SPECIAL, DON'T MISS IT!" placed underneath an Odeon sign on the front of the model. The music for these was a synth humming sound.
  • Another variant had the camera descending on the front of the model with Access and Visa logos (used at the time and with a neon white outline) flashing in successively on the bottom left of the screen. An Odeon gift voucher (also how it appeared at the time) flashes in on the bottom right a few seconds later. In this variant, the announcer would say "Enjoy your visit even more. Use your Access or Visa card and book your seats in advance in person or by phone. And Odeon gift vouchers are available so that your friends can enjoy a visit to this and every Odeon cinema - they're the perfect gift." while accompanied by the 1989 soundtrack.
  • If an intermission occurred (which didn't happen a lot even by then), then a variant would play where the camera moves very slowly towards the entrance side. On the right side of the screen, neon red/blue renditions of common cinema food and drink would flash from the top to the bottom accompanied by the bold white word "INTERMISSION" on the bottom.
    • The earlier version would play the normal animation, while the 1986 announcer said "2 minute warning: Eats and drinks are now available. It's your last chance before the film."

Technique: Live-action, though some CGI was put on to the model.

Audio: There were two themes, both of which were sometimes followed by an announcer:

  • The first was a rather serious, bouncy-sounding synth-pop theme, done with Yamaha DX7 bass and guitar presets ("Silver Screw" by Jeff Newmann from the Sonoton library); sometimes, it would start in a triumphant-sounding way or was a accompanied by an angry-sounding male announcer.
  • In 1989, the theme was replaced with a calmer- sounding disco theme. It sounds vaguely similar to "West End Girls" by the Pet Shop Boys and was composed by Warren Bennett. Because of what it sounded similar to, was named "Dead End Girls". Also, the announcer was changed; his tone was much more calmer.

Availability: It has been preserved by enthusiasts and might still be found on some obsolete cinema reels.

2nd Logo (1995-1997)

Visuals: The sequence starts out with two glowing spots that go in and out of frame a few times before colliding into an explosion of color and a cross-hair in the middle. Then a large, translucent Odeon logo moves across the screen from right to left a few times while the words "BOOK YOUR TICKETS BY PHONE" appear in a tiny font in the bottom right corner. A neon outline of an Odeon cinema then slowly zooms in before a visual of someone typing on a keyboard appears. The words "YOU CAN PAY BY CREDIT CARD" then appear in the bottom right corner. As more visuals and large Odeon logos pass, now the small text on the left side reads "ENJOY SOMETHING TO EAT...", then "SOMETHING TO DRINK..." on the right side. In the bottom middle as visuals pass, it reads "ODEON GIFT VOUCHERS ARE ON SALE". Then some sort of countdown reaches 10, causing the screen to flash white, revealing the Odeon logo on a black background with "CINEMAS", in white, below it slowly zooming towards the screen. The text "WELCOME TO" then fades in above the logo, also zooming in slowly. Once the logo gets close to the screen, it fades out.

Variant: A shorter variant exists. This variant lacks the text that appears throughout the logo and replaces the "WELCOME TO" text with "OUR FEATURE PRESENTATION".

Technique: A mixture of live action and 2D computer animation.

Audio: A trance song consisting of drum beats. When the "BOOK YOUR TICKETS BY PHONE" text appears, a telephone ringing can be heard, followed by someone saying "Hi, I booked our tickets over the phone and I'm paying by credit card." When the "ODEON GIFT VOUCHERS ARE ON SALE" text appears, there is a voice saying "So we can give Odeon gift vouchers..." followed by a different voice saying "...and they can see whatever they like!" This is followed by an explosion sound when the Odeon logo is revealed. Throughout the logo, what sounds like electrical zapping sounds can be heard.

Audio Variant: The short version has a slightly different beginning and omits the voice clips and zapping sounds. Instead, just before the 'countdown', a voice says "I saw this previous film, which was amazing, and I'm really looking forward to seeing-" before being interrupted by another voice saying "Shh! Be quiet!"

Availability: It wasn't easy to find during its run; it was introduced not long before the "Fanatical About Film" logo below was rolled out, which meant cinemas weren't using it for a long time and there were quite a lot of cinemas which didn't receive this logo at all and instead kept their "The First Choice" logo until the "Fanatical About Film" era started.

3rd Logo (Fanatical About Film) (1997-2002)

Visuals: The logo starts with a spinning green light (possibly representing a film reel) that fades into some blurred green lights. They then flash to a darkish blue room, with the words "SINCE 1930" appearing on neon green lights. Some more flashes follow, and then the words "52 WEEKS PER YEAR" appear in the same way. More lights appear, and then "7 DAYS PER WEEK" start to flash on an angle before a blue light sweeps up the screen to properly reveal the words. Then, the words "24 HOURS PER DAY" appear one by one as they flash with the light effects. At this point, a blue light spins to reveal the updated Odeon logo; this happens twice before the camera then shows the light shining on the glass closer up. The same shots of a blue light shining on the logo quickly are repeated a few more times at different angles before a neon "60" appears. A slow and bright flash then replaces that with "MINUTES PER HOUR" before another flash sweeps in. A red wave effect then slowly appears with the words "60 SECONDS PER MINUTE" below it flashing slightly. The screen then shows multiple shots of this wave over a second, together with segments of "24 FRAMES PER SECOND" before showing it fully for less than a second. Shots of the Odeon logo at different points with an orange are shown briefly before the logo itself is shown. The end logo is a glass "ODEON" that shines blue (with some explosion effects behind it) for a split second before the words "FANATICAL ABOUT FILM" appear. Afterwards, the words that appeared on the logo before are shown very quickly before the screen cuts to black.

Technique: Mostly live action, though there are some effects. This was directed by Nick Livesey at RSA Films.

Audio: A rather dark sounding jazz tune. Composed by The Elements Music in Los Angeles, California.

Legacy: This is a favorite of many due to its unique effects and music.

4th Logo (2002-2006)

Visuals: The entire logo consists of a black screen with pink text that explodes into pink sparkles before going to the next line reading the following: "At www.odeon.co.uk", "You can book tickets online", "register for exclusive offers", "and receive weekly film times by Email", "and book tickets", "by interactive TV", "with sky active" and a few more lines. After giving credit to the people who made the song in the background, the logo fades.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: A soft song.

Availability: It was first introduced when Odeon launched a booking service on Sky Active in the first quarter of 2002, and was used in tandem with the 5th logo when it was introduced shortly afterwards.

5th Logo (2002-2008)

Visuals: This logo consists of only a black screen and orange sparkles flashing from various places of the screen. After a bit of that, "Odeon" shows up for a few seconds and disappears. Finally, the last thing that happens is a small text that reads "fanatical about film" before fading.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: "I Like It Like That" by Pete Rodriguez.

6th Logo (2008-2015)

Visuals: The sequence starts off with a similar setting as the last logo, but in blue. There are also blue glares wiping across the screen as well. After a few seconds, "Odeon" appears and is wiped out by another glare. Finally, just like the last logo, it again reads "fanatical about film" and after one more glare, the logo fades.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: Music that seems to have been created on a computer.

7th Logo (2015-2022)

Visuals: The "O" from the Odeon logo spins in to the centre of the screen. It plays different effects to the ones shown on the screen (multicolored explosions), which continues until the screening begins.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: A calm, quiet ambient droning sound.

8th Logo (2021-2022)

Visuals: Same as the 13th AMC Theatres logo, but the AMC logo is replaced with the Odeon logo.

Technique: Same as the 13th AMC Theatres logo.

Audio: Same as the 13th AMC Theatres logo.

9th Logo (We Make Movies Better) (2022-)

Visuals: Over a stary blue and black space-like background is the Odeon logo fade into dust. The screen then cuts to a magician known as "The Magician" floating in front of a wormhole. The words "WELCOME", "TO A BIGGER" and "BRIGHTER" fade in front of her. She then claps her hands and she gets sucked into the wormhole while the words "WORLD OF WONDER" fade in. The letters of the word "Wonder" then fly at the screen. The screen then cuts to the eye of a cyborg, "The Navigator", while "WHERE YOUR EVERY WISH" fades in. Then The Navigator herself, her left hand holographic, holds a hologram of a smartphone with a QR code on it when "IS IN HAND" fades in. The sequence then fades to a man, "The Creator", with a glowing fingertip making popcorn, nachos and cola levitate when the words "A MOUTHWATERING FEAST" and "FOR THE SENSES" fade in. The sequence then fades to a woman, "The Memory Maker", playing with a magical orb while "WHERE MAGICAL", "MEMORIES" and "ARE MADE" fade in. She then tosses some magic onto the screen and the screen fades to the wormhole, only this time in reverse. The Odeon logo then appears and below, the text "WE MAKE MOVIES BETTER", the "O" in "MOVIES" being the place the tunnel is. The tunnel then disappears inside the "O". The screen glares and sparkles until the screening begins.

Technique: A combination of live action and CGI, designed by Elvis Communications and Preen Video Production. [1] [2]

Audio: A cinematic orchestrated theme.


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