HBO Feature/Special Presentation IDs

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Logo descriptions by
James Fabiano, Kris Starring, Zach Harden, Kylejaker1988, Logohub and Mysterious_Guy

Logo captures by

Editions by
Jeff B., Yoshidude987, and TheMisterFree

Video captures courtesy of
HBO, Imaginary Forces, Pepsi9072, Tyree McKelton, Alex Garza, and VectraQS

[edit credits]

1st Opening (1975-1978)


Note: The theme heard above, ripped off a cassette tape sent to various radio stations, can be heard here.

Nicknames: "HBO in Space", "Starship HBO", "HBO City", "The Big Bang", "The Big One", "Classic HBO", "80s HBO"

Opening: We start with a man tuning the cable on a TV set for a channel (to HBO, of course!) in his apartment as he settles down on the couch with his wife with food items in front of them (i.e. a tub of popcorn, a pizza cut into slices etc.). The camera pans backwards outside the window to show a somewhat busy city intersection with figurines of vehicles and people standing on the sidewalk at twilight. The music starts, and the camera "flies" forward down the street, through several intersections. At one point you can even see a movie theater that actually has "HBO Theatre" on the marquee. We fly over some buildings and we go out of the city and into the suburbs, with lots of trees. We fly over several houses and a clock tower. Then the camera pans up into the sky, which briefly turns sunset-ish, then blue and black with a starfield. We go up into space, eventually panning up to reveal the source of the light -- a star (positioned near the top center of the screen) that gets brighter and brighter, and eventually explodes in scarlet and blue upside-down egg-shaped flash, leaving behind a shiny chrome model monolith. The monolith moves down and across the screen and rotates clockwise, revealing itself as the HBO logo, then turns around one more time as the camera zooms in on the side of the O. The side of the O disappears in a flash of light, revealing a stream of red, yellow and blue rays streaking counter-clockwise around a silver axis, and "HBO FEATURE PRESENTATION" (Note: different titles would appear depending on the program) appears, one word atop the other (and a line under "PRESENTATION"), in a heavy, lavender 3D "gaspipe" lettering style against an array of purple lines. Some more rays sweep across the words and shine, then the background would fade to black with more flashes from the surrounding rays.


  • This logo was parodied in the music video for "DVNO" by the electro house group Justice, with even more high-tech effects.
  • The HBO short-form interstitial series Behind the Scenes, which aired between features from the early 1980s to about the early 1990s, had one episode titled "A Closer Look: Inside the HBO City" devoted to showing virtually all the work behind this logo and how the ideas of the bumper came up. The episode can be viewed here.
  • The Nostalgia Critic took a look at this bumper in his "Rise of the Commercials" video, in which he praised it.
  • Every summer in Bryant Park (one block away from HBO's headquarters in New York City), HBO showcases movies projected on a massive screen to the audience. The long version starting from the fog is played before each feature. The intro begins with "Bryant Park Summer Film Festival" in an old fashioned red and yellow font. Then the intro continues as normal. Some organizers and moviegoers in the park have been known to dance to the music.


  • A slightly more common version starts off with the city covered in fog (which slowly clears up), then has the camera pan across the city as usual.
  • A short version of the logo that starts before the "big bang" was shown most often (the long version would only be used for new features).
  • There were multiple different endings used depending on what type of program was shown. They include "HBO Feature Presentation" (the standard version), "HBO Premiere Presentation" (for HBO Premiere Films before they were renamed to HBO Pictures), "HBO Family Showcase", "HBO Classic Feature", "HBO Theatre", "HBO Music", "HBO Saturday Night Movie", "HBO Sunday Night Movie", "HBO Special", "HBO Comedy", "HBO Rock", "Standing Room Only", "HBOriginal", "HBO Sports", "On Location", and "World Premiere Presentation".
  • Two April Fools Day variants that used a much cheaper version of the city with HBO monolith, and end card also exist: one used "HBO Feature Presentation" in the style of a rebus puzzle (H-bee-O Feet-Y-oar Present-A-shun) which flipped up into the screen, while the other had the "lyrics" to the song in a "follow the bouncing ball" style over the model city. When we reach to space, the familiar HBO is now in aluminum foil held by string and is spins around by a hand. "HBO FEATURE PRESENTATION" in cheaply arranged paper letters fade in on a black background with a pair of live-action hands making odd movements briefly over it (the rebus puzzle version also faded to this, but with only a half-second of hand movement).
  • Some end cards had the lines colored royal blue or a red-gray gradient.
  • A somewhat rare version exists. After the man tunes the cable to HBO, we can see his family sharing popcorn while HBO started to be tuned on TV before zooming out the window. This was apparently used in the first weeks this intro debuted.
  • Occasionally, during debuts of popular films, when the streaks move around the "O" it would cross-fade into a promo, and when the promo ended it would fade back to the "Feature Presentation" version, which would end as normal.
  • For HBO's joint venture with Silver Screen Partners, the part in space had been adapted for their logo; this was only seen on the 1984 movie Flashpoint.
  • On HBO Hungary in the mid-90s, a bumper has the full logo playing as normal until the end where the HBO logo fades away before the rays appeared, then a still "HBO" logo appeared in front of the space background.

FX/SFX: The city cars, wind, and the light sounds in the end. It's worth nothing that not a single computer-generated image was used to make this bumper. The city is an intricately detailed model with lightbulbs placed under the houses, from which a motorized camera was used to film it. There were also crew members who puffed smoke into the city to add the atmosphere. The starburst before the HBO logo appears is the "stargate" animation, made with two pieces of art and is moved around and shot frame-by-frame (Scanimation-eqsue animation). The HBO logo itself is a model made of brass and is chrome-plated and combined with the starry sky background. The part with the colored rays was actually a series of fiber optics with motors and gears and pulleys used to change the colors and move them around and put inside the chrome "O". All of this work, done by Liberty Studios in New York City, should show you how wildly impressive this opener is.

Music/Sounds: The sounds of the TV in the opening scene, then some honking horns and city noises (or, in the short version, a whoosh). A piano/string chord is heard, which leads into a dramatic orchestral theme that gets progressively more tense, eventually becoming a very loud, upbeat, almost disco-style horn-driven overture, ending with synth sweeps (representing the rays "inside" the "O"). Composed by Ferdinand J. Smith with a 65-man orchestra. Awesome music!

Music/Sounds Trivia: There is a full length pop version of the theme, also composed by Ferdinand Smith. You can listen to it here. Another version of said extended remix with lyrics, known as "The Fantasy", exists as well.

Music/Sound Variants:

  • For the first few months the open was used, a different end-tune that was similar to the "HBO Special" version played instead of the normal end.
  • For the "Family Showcase" variant, the music would get softer and play an uplifting theme just after the "O" disappears.
  • For the "HBO Music/HBO Rock" variants, a rock guitar tune would play near the end.
  • For the "HBO Special" variant, a faster-paced horn tune would play, which sounds kind of like a game show theme.
  • For the "Standing Room Only" variant, an upbeat, fast-paced tune would play.
  • For the "On Location" variant, a slow, jazzy tune would play.
  • One April Fools variant had the theme being played on kazoos, while a "BOING!" sound is heard while the aluminum HBO comes in on the background.
  • For the "HBO Comedy" open, a "comedic" tune would play.
  • For the "cross-fade promo" version, a voice-over would begin speaking as we enter the interior of the "O", and the first variant mentioned played under the VO at the end.
  • For the "HBOriginal" variant, a noir film style piece would play.

Availability: Extinct, but it was used for a stunning 20 years thanks to its popularity, so it shouldn't be difficult to find on old tapes. It can also be seen on HBO's YouTube channel. You can also see this before movies in Bryant Park in New York City, shown every Monday evening in summer. Makes a surprise appearance on the 2019 special Dan Soder: Son of a Gary.

Editor's Note: One of the most--or even arguably the most--beloved and iconic opening bumpers of the 1980s, thanks to the sheer amounts of detail and effort put into the visuals, and its iconic music, which HBO has consistently continued to use in modified forms ever since.

11th Opening (November 1, 1986-October 31, 1997)

Gl_mcl6Q5I8|id3=AAlh-Ql7M_0|id4=F6tzlpY4mx8|id5=l9K3qqwe5N8|id6=smQkcMbuzhQ|id7=yQ54MVEQiW0|id8=FDIb8lPvV8k}} Nicknames: "HBO 1997"

Opening: In a widescreen effect (the letterbox bars have a black and blue background), we see the white words "FEATURE PRESENTATION" appear over the HBO logo seen in many situations (like the ITV "Hearts" idents from the same time). For example, one scenario involves the HBO logo inside a limo with several paparazzi stumbling to get to the limo and taking several pictures. Another features a zoom-up from a skyscraper to reveal the skyscraper is in the shape of the HBO logo (an influence on the next logo). Finally, another one shows the HBO logo in a fish form.

Variant: The first few uses of this logo had a brief look at the movie that's going to play. The logo would start as usual, but then the word "NOW" would zoom in. Some clips from the following movie would then play. Then, the appearance of the HBO logo in this logo would appear, with the "NOW" animation playing again, and then the full logo would play as normal after that.

FX/SFX: CGI animation, often mixed with live action. Done by Telezign.

Music/Sounds: The 12-note 1982 fanfare heard in different instruments depending on the variant. The "Now" variant features an announcer saying over the music "It's on, now. [brief description of movie]. [2 actors from movie] in, [movie title]. It's on HBO, right now."

Availability: Extinct. These opens were only used for two years before the next one came along (see below).

Editor's Note: None.

16th Opening (November 5, 1999-April 1, 2011)


Nicknames: "The Road", "HBO 2000", "Welcome to the New Millennium, HBO!", "HBGlow", "HBO in the Harbor", "HBO City Revisited", "HBO City II"

Opening: We see a busy street corner with a theater (a homage to the original theater from the 1982 opening) whose marquee reads "HBO FEATURE PRESENTATION". We zoom into the theater, pass the box office (a homage to the zooming box office from the 1979 opening) and into a bright light. We end up zooming down a street in a residential neighborhood with cars driving and people walking about. The camera goes through a bridge superstructure shaped like an "H". We end up zooming down a rural highway, passing farms and such. After we hit some fog, we are on a mountain road, flying over a pit, and we head down a "B" shaped tunnel. We end up on a desert road surrounded with gorges and cliffs at the other end, and we zoom into a truck with an "O" shaped, cylindrical tank, taking us through another transition. We end up zooming through a CGI rendering of "HBO City" from the 1982 opening, then into a skyscraper-filled downtown. Passing through the buildings with a lens flare effect, we travel down a freeway as lights quickly power up from behind buildings, and then more lights activate ahead of us. The camera pans and takes us into an aerial view above the clouds, and we see the spotlights are outlining an HBO-logo shaped harbor. The 3D letters "FEATURE" go into place over the HBO logo, and a flash below that brings forth the word "PRESENTATION" on a black rectangle as we tilt above the HBO-harbor.

Variant: A shorter, much more common version of this logo was available, which starts off with the lights lighting up. The full version as described above was only shown on Saturday night movie premieres.

FX/SFX: Breathtaking CGI from Pittard Sullivan! A nice computer generated opener inspired by HBO's original stop-motion effort.

Music/Sounds: A powerful, dramatic orchestral fanfare that uses the 12-note HBO fanfare at the beginning, and near the end. During the "HBO City" sequence, there are whooshes that can be heard from passing cars and buses.

Availability: Extinct, but it was used for 12 years, so it may appear on old tapes, DVDs, and/or digital recordings. Also appeared on most of the HBO multiplex channels from 2002 on (with the exception of HBO Family).

Editor's Note: A very suitable successor to the iconic 1982 bumper, with spectacular computer graphics and an amazing orchestral fanfare.

17th Opening (April 2, 2011-December 31, 2016)

3DGdEykjKfA}} Nicknames: "HBO 2011", "HBO Aurora", "HBOredom", "The Personification of All That is Corporate", "Yawn Box Office", "Home Boring Office", "HBO of Boredom"

Opening: On a black background, a flash appears. Then, the flash turns into a cerulean aurora background and as it does so, the HBO logo on the left and the words "Feature Presentation" (set in Gotham Book) on the right appear.

Variant: Other channels have their logo in place of their partner logo. Examples are HBO Latino (which replaces the text with "Pelicula") and HBO Family.

FX/SFX: The flash. The animation in this bumper is done by Jesse Vartanian.

Music/Sounds: A brief ascending section of strings, followed by an orchestrated version of the 12-note HBO fanfare. HBO also made a prototype fanfare featuring just a latter part of the music out of just a bass and violin, which was exclusively used on HBO Family.

Music/Sounds Variant: A alternate version exists where the HBO fanfare sounds different and using the familiar tone from the 16th opening. It was also heard on HBO Canada.

Availability: Extinct. Although HBO USA retired this bumper on July 4, 2014, HBO Asia continued to use this opening until December 31, 2016.

Editor's Note: While not a badly-animated logo, this effort is very simplistic and boring, which is especially sad considering HBO's history of eye-dazzling opening bumpers.

18th Opening (July 5, 2014-)

qhNFxp7Ke3w}} Nicknames: "HBO 2014", "The HBO Gallery", "HBOredom II", "The Second Personification of All That is Corporate", "Yawn Box Office II", "Home Boring Office II", "iHBO", "HBO On an iPhone", "HBO GO/Now Ident", "HBO of Boredom II"

Opening: On a black background, pictures from various movies (which change frequently depending on what's being shown on HBO at the time) fade in and drop. Then, they fade out and drop down again. Then, the HBO logo and the words "Feature Presentation" from the previous logo drop down.


  • On HBO Family, the background is white, the word "FAMILY" is under the HBO logo. There is also a variation of that bumper in which the background is white, and the HBO logo and "Feature Presentation" are in light blue.
  • Two versions have been exclusively used on HBO Asia: the first is the Game of Thrones version which features a teal-colored Game of Thrones background with the GOT logo below fading in. The second one is the Westworld version with the movie pictures being in B&W and the Westworld logo fading in below at the end.
  • Sometimes, a movie picture is still here at the left as all the pictures drops down, while the split with the HBO logo and "Feature Presentation" appears in the right.

FX/SFX: The animation, which is even more simple than the last bumper.

Music/Sounds: Depending on the version:

  • Same as before, but an announcer says "And now, an HBO feature presentation".
  • There's also a different variant where an announcer says "And now, an HBO feature presentation: [movie title]."
  • On HBO Asia, there's no announcer. The same on HBO Family USA.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • On the HBO Asia GOT version, it uses a different orchestrated fanfare.
  • A alternate fanfare from the previous opening is used.

Availability: The normal version is retired in US as of March 4, 2017; the HBO Family version is still being used. Debuted on HBO Asia on January 1, 2017.

Editor's Note: Impressively, this bumper manages to be even more boring than the last, looking more like something out of an iPhone app as opposed to a television bumper. Thankfully, this changes with the next bumper.

19th Opening (March 4, 2017-)


Nicknames: "HBO 2017", "The HBO City of Tomorrow", "HBO City in the Future", "HBO in the Futuristic World", "HBO City III"

Opening: We fade in to a small shot of a man holding a bowl of popcorn. As the camera pans to the right, we see him walking towards his wife, seen snuggling up with a blanket on a sofa. In the background we can see two sets of home plants, a desk lamp, a set of magazines, and two glasses of (what is believed to be) wine. On the wall, we see a canvas print of another apartment. Below the couch, a pair of shoes are visible. The man places the popcorn on a table, settles down with his wife, and turns on the TV. As we zoom out through a window, a suitcase-style turntable can be seen. Zooming further out of the apartment, we see a few more sets of apartment complexes. Another pair of shoes can be seen tangling from a telephone wire. Panning further to the right, we see two streetlamps. We then zoom out from the streets into the room of two teenage siblings; an older sister and a younger brother. The wall is covered with fan posters of various celebrities. Zooming further out, we see the sister on her bed, and the brother on a large cushion. The brother holds a tablet towards his sister. Zooming out even further, we reach a balcony. In it, a patio table and a bicycle can be seen. As the camera zooms further out, we zoom out into the living room of another apartment complex. This scene is basically a recreation of the 10th opening, with a few modern touches added (e.g. cushion couches on a rug next to a flat-screen TV, which is showing a portion of the 10th opening (the part where we zoom into the "O"). As we zoom out again, it is noticeable that the apartment complex is actually a home, nested on a floating brick lawn. More apartments and condominiums are nested next to the home. We zoom in to the living room of yet another apartment. The first thing noticed is the flat-screen TV, which is also showing the 10th opening. In it, a group of college students are seen on a couch, with one of them serving a snack. As we zoom out yet again, a man, holding his phone, can be seen on the balcony of yet another apartment. After that, the camera zooms out further and further. It is then revealed that the city is masked in the HBO logo, set over a dark sky background on a flat grassy plain, with a river shown beside it. The words "MOVIE PREMIERE" are seen below the logo. At this point, everything shown inside the towering logo is no longer noticeable in detail.

Trivia: This opening was made by Imaginary Forces.


  • There is a more common short version that starts near the end when the HBO logo is revealed, and the next under the logo reads "MOVIE PRESENTATION".
  • On HBO Latino, it reads "PRESENTACIÓN DE PELÍCULA" at the bottom.

FX/SFX: There is so much detail that it is near impossible to describe everything going on in the logo. A truly breathtaking blend of live-action and CGI and an amazing homage to the 10th and 16th openings.

Music/Sounds: Similar to that of the 16th opening, it's another powerful, epic orchestral fanfare that incorporates the 12-note 1982 fanfare, starting with only a piano, before progressing with some strings, and leading into a full, passionate orchestra. Plus, you can hear the city noises and river sounds. Composed by Man Made Music.

Availability: Debuted on February 28, 2017 as an unlisted video on HBO's YouTube channel. This full version premiered on HBO on March 4, 2017, before its premiere of X-Men: Apocalypse, and can be seen before new movies every Saturday night. The short version can be seen before most movies on the HBO channels (except HBO Family, and if there are promos before the movie).

Editor's Note: To say the least, this more than makes up for the two previous bland bumpers. An amazing combination of CGI and live-action and another fantastic musical score makes this a perfect successor to the 1982 and 1999 openers.

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