Reel FX Animation Studios

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


Reel FX is an American digital animation studio based in Dallas, Texas and Santa Monica, California, founded in 1996. The studio develops and produces animated films, short form content and virtual reality experiences. They have also animated logos, notably Paramount Animation and the Dolby Digital "City Redux" trailer. Its first animated feature film, Free Birds, was released in 2013 and grossed over $110 million worldwide. They also animated Huayi Brothers' Rock Dog, STX's UglyDolls, Warner Bros. Pictures Animation's Scoob! and Netflix's Back to the Outback and The Monkey King.

1st Logo (September 14, 2004)

Visuals: There is a circle with an "X" on it. A flame resides on the top of the circle. "REEL FX CREATIVE STUDIOS" in white is below.

Trivia: The flame in the logo is a reference to Reel FX being among one of the first studios to use Autodesk Flame.

Technique: A still digital graphic.

Audio: The closing theme.

Availability: Seen only on G.I. Joe: Valor vs. Venom.

2nd Logo (September 24, 2008-January 25, 2011)

Visuals: Within an orange circle is a flame, like the previous logo. Below that are "REEL FX" and "ENTERTAINMENT" below. Everything is in orange.

Variant: On Open Season 3, the logo is white, the text is in a different font and is equal size.

Technique: A still digital graphic.

Audio: The closing theme of the movie.

Availability: Only seen at the end of Open Season 2 and 3.

3rd Logo (November 1, 2013-December 15, 2021)

Visuals: On a black background is a blue light with sci-fi particles in the form of circles flying towards the camera. The light flies from the bottom left to the top right, through a blue space background that fades in (which actually continues from the Relativity logo from Free Birds). The light then hyper jumps through space, passes through some meteors and flies to the Moon. A UFO then fires two lasers at the light and strikes it (an alien silhouette can be seen in the UFO) and the light flies behind three craters of the moon (dust comes out of one of the craters after the light hits it). As the light turns behind the moon, the text "REEL FX" appears and brightens up with "ANIMATION STUDIOS" underneath. Some space clouds appear with Earth behind the text. The light then flies above the text and strikes the logo, causing all the letters to fly off, and the O from "ANIMATION" flies to the camera, turning it to black.

Trivia: This was written, designed, and directed by Mark Whiting, who also designed the 3rd and 5th Relativity logos and did art for animated productions like The Iron Giant and Duck Dodgers. A behind the scenes look at the logo's production can be found here.

Variant: On Free Birds, the first movie to use this logo, the light has been replaced with S.T.E.V.E. (Space Time Exploration Vehicle Envoy), an egg-shaped time machine from the movie. The logo also directly segues away from the Relativity vortex logo. S.T.E.V.E. can still be seen briefly in the standard version of the logo, right before the letters fly off.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: A harp tune with a seven-note flute. Afterwards, a majestic fanfare with sci-fi sounds plays. The music was composed by Jeff Cardoni (under the direction of Mark Whiting), while Skywalker Ranch handled the sound effects.

Audio Variant: On Free Birds, a different triumphant orchestral sci-fi theme, entitled "Starry Side Up", composed by Dominic Lewis, plays through this logo and the Relativity logo.


  • Seen on Free Birds, The Book of Life, and Rumble.
  • It did not appear on Sherlock Gnomes, UglyDolls, Scoob!, Back to the Outback, or The Monkey King, as they only provided animation services for those films as opposed to co-producing those movies.

Logo (2014)

Visuals: The camera zooms through a forest at night with green fireflies towards a boy with his back to the camera, roasting a marshmallow on a campfire, as a massive beast with glowing yellow eyes approaches him. The beast shoves a tree out of his way, shaking his head a bit. The beast comes into full view as his eyes stop glowing. The boy offers the beast his marshmallow, which seems to catch him off guard for a moment, before he smiles. The text "REEL FX ANIMATION STUDIOS", in the same font as before but now in gold, fades over the scene. The scene fades to black, leaving only the text for a second, which then fades out while a firefly flies past.

Trivia: Like the previous logo, this was designed by Mark Whiting.

Variant: On Reel FX's Twitter account, the logo reads "ANIMATION" instead of "ANIMATION STUDIOS" and it is still.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: Ambient nighttime noises such as crickets, loons, owls, and the crackling of the campfire, as well as the beast's growls and stomping.

Availability: Unknown. It is available on Mark Whiting's Vimeo page under the bizarre name "LUMBER 1000 0010 comp v018". A screenshot of the logo is also used as the banner of Reel FX's Twitter account.

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