Paramount Classics

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Paramount Classics was launched in May 1998 to distribute films with a more "arthouse" and/or foreign feel than its parent company, as well as occasionally distributing content from Paramount's other labels. In 2006, Paramount launched Paramount Vantage, another label which served Classics' purpose; Classics was then retooled to focus more on foreign properties and documentary films before being folded into Vantage in 2008.

1st Logo (March 12-November 12, 1999)

Visuals: Over a black background, the logo starts with the Paramount Classics print logo, which has the Paramount gate entrance with opened gates leading to the mountain. The words "PARAMOUNT CLASSICS" are seen below.

Trivia: This isn't the first time Paramount used their gate entrance as a logo design; they previously used it as a design for their budget video division Gateway in the 1980s and early 1990s.


  • On the trailer for Trekkies, the logo appears in an iris-in shot.
  • On the trailer for Cabaret Balkan, the logo is tinted in sepia.

Technique: A still image.

Audio: None.

Availability: Seen on the trailers for Where's Marlowe?, Trekkies, Get Real and The Adventures of Sebastian Cole. Due to the general obscurity of the films in question, it's unknown if this logo appears on them (though Trekkies uses the standard Paramount logo of the time).

2nd Logo (March 10, 2000-August 7, 2007)

Visuals: As the camera spins around in a blue/pinkish cloudy sky, there is a white light illuminate a blue-tinted Paramountain from the 1986 Paramount logo without the stars, text, and byline. After working its way to the front, the camera then zooms out to reveal the Paramount gate entrance. The gates then open to reveal the mountain and the words "PARAMOUNT CLASSICS" fade in below.

Trivia: The Paramountain's rotating animation is based on a 1998 CGI version of the 1986 Paramount logo (animated by Pittard Sullivan) that was used on a few movie trailers in 2000-2001. It also briefly served as a home video indicator from 1998-1999. See the Paramount Home Entertainment page for more information.


  • Girl on the Bridge has the logo in black and white.
  • It exists in 1.85:1, 2.35:1, and windowboxed versions.
  • On 4:3 full screen prints of films, the logo is in either 1.33:1 ratio or 1.37:1 "academy" ratio.
  • On 4:3 full screen prints of many films since November 21, 2001, the logo zooms out to a much farther distance than usual, revealing more of the Paramount cloud background at the top above the Paramount gate entrance and more of the green field at the bottom below the "PARAMOUNT CLASSICS" text.
  • On the 2003 demo VHS of Mostly Martha, the logo is squished to fit the 4:3 aspect ratio.
  • A rare version exists. After the camera then zooms out to reveal the Paramount gate entrance, the gates are already open.
  • At the end of movies, the logo is shortened to the point before the text fades in.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: A majestic piano/string theme (composed by Michael Kamen) with wind sounds at the end, the opening theme of the movie or none.

Availability: Seen on films made by the company, such as Mad Hot Ballroom, Northfork, Sunshine, Mean Creek, and The Triumph of Love. It debuted theatrically on Deterrence and last appeared on Beneath.

3rd Logo (August 17, 2007-April 4, 2008)

Visuals: Over a black background, the logo starts with black ink lines drawing on a white paper sheet. They form a brush-drawn version of the Paramount gate, taken into a box, with the company name below. The logo zooms out with a white background.

Variant: On The Kite Runner, the logo is still and takes place on a black background.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: None or the opening sounds of the movie.

Availability: This was seen on only three films: Arctic Tale, Shine a Light, and The Kite Runner.

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