United Artists Television

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum


United Artists Television was the television production and distribution division of United Artists that was originally formed in 1949. They distributed their parent company's film library, but by the 1950s, there was little success. United Artists Corporation acquired Associated Artists Productions in 1958 and renamed it as "United Artists Associated" and in the process, they acquired the pre-1950 Warner Bros. theatrical film library. In 1960, United Artists acquired Ziv Television Programs, forming "Ziv-United Artists" as their television production and primary distribution arm. In 1962, Ziv was phased out, causing the name to revert back to the original name. United Artists was later purchased by Transamerica Corporation in 1967. United Artists Associated was reincorporated as "United Artists Television Distribution" the following year. In 1981, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer merged with United Artists to create "MGM/UA Entertainment Co.". As a result, their respective television units combined as well, forming "MGM/UA Entertainment Co. Television" (or "MGM/UA Television") in 1982. The "United Artists Television" logo was eventually phased out around 1983 in favor of the "MGM/UA Television" banner, although the United Artists Television name was used on select television series as an in-name-only unit of MGM/UA Television until 1995. On September 22, 2014, MGM purchased a 55% interest in One Three Media and Lightworkers Media and merged the two companies to form "United Artists Media Group", with Hearst Corporation also owning a minor stake of the company until December 14, 2015, when MGM acquired the remaining 45% stake, becoming its wholly-owned subsidiary and folding it later. United Artists Media Group later became "UAMG Content, LLC". With the exceptions of Gilligan's Island (distributed by Warner Bros. Television via Turner Entertainment Co., who retains the copyright), The Fugitive (owned by CBS Television Studios through Spelling Television) and The Mothers-in-Law (owned by Desilu, Too (not to be confused with the original Desilu Productions, later Paramount Television, now CBS Television Studios), the remaining United Artists Television library is currently owned by MGM Television.

1st Logo (September 22, 1959-October 9, 1961)

Visuals: A superimposed logo, featuring a block-type "UA" stacked diagonally with the text "A United Artists Television Presentation" across. The logo is bordered inside a transparent television tube-like field.


  • Opening: In a black background, a transparent television tube-like field appears with the block-type letters "UA" inside it. The text "A United Artists Television Presentation" then fades in.
  • Ziv-United Artists Variant: See Ziv Television Programs for description.

Technique: A still image or zooming effects.

Audio: Usually the closing theme of the show.

Audio Variant: In the opening variant, a timpani drum roll is heard.


  • The original can be seen on episodes of Hudson's Bay and The Dennis Keefe Show.
  • The Ziv-United Artists variant can be seen on Bat Masterson on ThisTV and Encore Westerns.

2nd Logo (October 1, 1962-May 1, 1967)

Visuals: On a gray background, the stacked text "UNITED ARTISTS TELEVISION" appears as an outline, surrounded by 2 white brackets (think this: { }). The brackets then pan over the text, turning it and the brackets black. When they reach over back to the sides (like this: } { ), they quickly close up over the text, wiping it away until they meet, where a line appears on the bottom half, making a stacked "UA" (looking like this }{).


  • The color variant had yellow, red, orange or white lettering and the UA logo in white on a light blue or brown background. The animation is also smoother and there are visible shadows on the brackets. The fully animated version was shown on It's About Time and My Mother the Car. It also exists in B&W.
  • A still variant with "Released by" on top of the logo and the brackets already in their switched places was seen on season one episodes of The Rat Patrol and Hey, Landlord.
  • There exists an in-credit version that had it superimposed on the ending screen, or on the letters seen in the next logo.

Technique: Camera controlled animation.


  • For the original 1962 version, there was a musical swell and sometimes followed by a "click" sound from the shapes when they intersected and merged. It finishes with a flourish at the end.
  • Some season three episodes of The Patty Duke Show featured their closing theme over the logo but retaining the "click" sound.
  • In 1965, the music was replaced with a whimsical theme accompanied by a xylophone.
  • Other shows would use the closing theme of the show.


  • It's seen on The Patty Duke Show and It's About Time on Antenna TV and should be retained on prints aired on Me-TV as of 2016.
  • It was also seen on The Outer Limits on Syfy.
  • This is also available on the MGM/UA Home Video VHS and MGM DVD releases of The Outer Limits and on the 2004 Warner Home Video DVD release of the unaired pilot episode of Gilligan's Island titled "Marooned" (the remainder of the series used the next logo).
  • The version with the third theme was used on O.K. Crackerby and My Mother the Car.
  • It can also be seen on The New Phil Silvers Show.

3rd Logo (September 17, 1963-August 29, 1967)

Visuals: This is an in-credit logo for some of United Artists Television's co-productions. In it, "UA" appears in a bold font. There are two known versions of this logo:

  • The Fugitive: The logo logo flips in (the same transition effect on all other groups of text on the closing credits) and appears as:
in association with

Some early episodes lack the "UA" and later episodes have "Filmed at the SAMUEL GOLDWYN STUDIO" underneath the logo.

  • Gilligan's Island: The "UA" is on the left side of the middle section with:

appearing above. Like The Fugitive version, there was originally no "UA".

Technique: A still image.

Audio: The closing theme of the show.


  • This can be found intact on all episodes of Gilligan's Island and The Fugitive on Me-TV and on DVD releases by Warner Home Video for the former and CBS DVD and Paramount Home Entertainment for the latter.
  • It can also be seen on It's About Time on Antenna TV.

4th Logo (September 10, 1967-April 28, 1968)

Visuals: On a light blue background, there is a yellow circle with a black circle inside. There is the words "UNITED ARTISTS TELEVISION" in yellow lettering (appears to be in a cut-out) appearing inside a circular field. The word "TELEVISION" is under "RTISTS" in small lettering. The byline "A Transamerica COMPANY" is seen in small letters underneath. The word "Transamerica" is seen in a yellow Impact font. The letters "U" and the "A" are somewhat taller than the rest of the company name, and they overlap each other. The logo resembles the movie logo at the time, but without the rest of the background.

Variant: There's a variant where the background is sky blue and the circle and lettering are orange. The text "RELEASED BY" is seen in place of "FROM" on the upper left corner. This variant is also zoomed further away.

Technique: A still image.

Audio: The closing theme of the show.


  • It was originally seen on season two episodes of The Rat Patrol and season one episodes of The Mothers-in-Law (the last United Artists Television program to use this logo), as well on off-network syndicated reruns of programs such as Gilligan's Island in the late 1960s (the company was one of the first television syndication companies to follow that practice).
  • Currently seen on season one episodes of The Mothers-in-Law on "The Complete Series" DVD release by MPI Home Video and Me-TV reruns.

5th Logo (September 15, 1968-1975)

Visuals: It starts with two sets of blue lines going into place in unison against a black background. One set of three lines turns to the left, the other set turns to the right. There are six lines altogether, revealing the logo of Transamerica Corporation, United Artists' former owner. The logo zooms out to the side to make room for the company name.

Byline: The name was referred to as "United Artists Television, Entertainment from Transamerica Corporation" during this time.

Opening Variant: On this variant, the animation is the same as that of the film logo, except the text says "United Artists Television" instead of just "United Artists".

Technique: Cel animation.

Audio: The closing theme of the show or the ending part of the movie logo theme from 1968.

Audio Variant: The opening version contains the complete fanfare from the 1968 United Artists logo.


  • The standard version with the fanfare was last seen on Gilligan's Island off-network reruns from the time frame.
  • Currently seen on season two episodes of The Mothers-in-Law on "The Complete Series" DVD release by MPI Home Video and Me-TV reruns.
  • The opening variant was seen on television films and television prints of co-produced DFE Films and The Mirisch Company cartoons from the time frame and it will either be removed or plastered by a later United Artists or MGM logo.
  • This logo has been reported to have been seen on an episode of Gilligan's Island on the French-Canadian channel Prise 2.

6th Logo (1975-1981)

Visuals: It is similar to the previous logo. The re-modified name "United Artists Television" fades in, and the "Transamerica T" fades in along with the shortened byline "A Transamerica Company".

Variant: On syndication prints of older United Artists Television series of the time frame, a still shot variant of the 1975 United Artists logo was used.

Technique: Fading effects.

Audio: None.


  • The logo was seen on syndication prints of Gilligan's Island from the time frame (which were in circulation as late as the late 1980s).
  • However, by this point, United Artists Television was primarily a syndication company that distributed their film and television library (and MGM Television programs, due to United Artists' distribution deal with MGM prior to the two companies merging).
  • Most current prints will likely be sourced from the original prints or this logo is removed and/or plastered by an MGM Television logo.
  • This logo may have been on television movies produced by the company.

7th Logo (1981-1982)

Visuals: Just a shortened variant of the 1981 United Artists logo.

Technique: None. [possible misuse]

Audio: None.

Availability: Same as the previous logo.

8th Logo (December 4, 1982-1983)

Visuals: Just a closer-up still shot variant of the 1982 United Artists logo.

Technique: A still image.

Audio: The final three notes as normal (as seen on Witness for the Prosecution). It later used a rearranged version of the last four film logo notes (later used for MGM/UA Entertainment Co. Television Distribution).

Audio Variant: Sometimes, the end theme would be heard over this logo or it is silent.

Availability: It is only known to have appeared on old prints of three television films: Witness for the Prosecution, I Take These Men (in which an Encore airing retained it) and I Want to Live.

Final Note

In 2014, United Artists Media Group was formed, returning the United Artists name to television for the first time since 1995.

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