Illumination

From CLG Wiki

Background

Illumination (formerly Illumination Entertainment) is the animation production company of Chris Meledandri, the executive producer of Ice Age. It is now a subsidiary of Universal Studios, itself a division of NBCUniversal, but didn't use a logo until the cinema debut of Despicable Me in 2010. The studio is best known for the popular Despicable Me franchise and its spinoff Minions.

(July 9, 2010-)

Nickname: "Minions"

Logo: Each film released by the company has a different variant, but they all involve the Minions (the popular side characters from Despicable Me; usually Bob and Stuart) doing a comedic skit in front of, or interacting with, the large stacked text "ILLUMINATION ENTERTAINMENT" (with "ILLUMINATION" wider than the bottom text).

  • Despicable Me: A minion from the film peeks out from the right side of the screen, anxiously greeting the audience. Then, all of a sudden, shining text reading "ILLUMINATION ENTERTAINMENT" appears behind the minion. The minion is clearly frightened by the loud music that plays as it appears, and as the music ends, he stands stunned, and then falls over. He then crawls off the screen.
  • Hop: The text is already formed, and one minion wearing bunny ears and a cotton bunny tail is prancing to the right while carrying an Easter basket and tossing confetti, while a minion in the center of the screen observes in confusion. The bunny minion shows off his costume, but the other minion is not amused.
  • The Lorax: The name looks different. The text is again already formed, and we see two minions cutting down a Truffula tree with a chainsaw. A Barbaloot from the movie then lands on one of them, eating some Truffula berries. The other minion slowly backs away nervously.
  • Despicable Me 2: Again, a different design for the text. As with Hop and The Lorax, the text is already formed, and two minions stand at the bottom right corner of the logo. The one-eyed minion sings "TA-DAAA!", then the two-eyed minion shoves the one-eyed minion aside and also sings "TA-DAAA!". The one-eyed minion then shoves the two-eyed minion and sings "TA-DAAA!" once again, and then the two minions then start yelling "TA-DAAA!" at each other and start pushing and shoving until the one-eyed minion shoves the other off-screen, and triumphantly yells "TA-DAAA!". The off-screen minion then chimes "TA-DAA!", causing the other to mumble in frustration while glancing out at the audience.
  • Minions: The preceding Universal Pictures logo has the Minions singing the logo theme, and one minion voice continues to sing the closing high note as the Illumination logo fades in, and the five-minion choir is standing below the already-formed text, and the one in the center is still singing the high note as the others watch. The center minion finally runs out of breath and falls flat on his face, then weakly holds out a hand for the others to lift him up, but quickly puts it back down as the other minions exchange glances.
  • The Secret Life of Pets (prototype): A minion is seen teasing a puppy by squeaking a ball. He continues until a group of dogs comes in, and one starts to bark. The minion then throws the ball, but the dogs instead start chasing the minion offscreen. Then, a chihuahua runs after the group of dogs, barking until it goes offscreen. This variant did not make it into the final movie.
  • The Secret Life of Pets and Despicable Me 2 (NBC airing): The background fades in from black. Bob walks in from the right, scatting a tune. After a little while, the text "MIN" and "ION" (perhaps not coincidentally, the word "Minion") turns on and flashes briefly, while the light above the "I" in "MIN" glows. The rest of the text, "ILLU" and "AT" in "ILLUMINATION", along with "ENTERTAINMENT", turn on the same way as "MIN" and "ION". Bob gets excited, shouts "Illumination!" twice, and squees.
    • A version that starts where he says "Illumination!" was seen on the shorts The Secret Life of Kyle and Minion Scouts.
    • There is also another version without the "ENTERTAINMENT" text.
    • Another one exists without Bob, which was seen at the start of four short films (Mower Minions, Norman Television, Weenie, and Yellow is the New Black) and the end of Minions Holiday Special. This version is still.
  • Sing: Another different text design. 4 minions are shown. The one on the very right plays a harmonica, then sings "La" notes. He then sings "Illumination" and the other minions join as the chorus, whilst raising their arms in the air. The one on the left screams "ILLUMINATION!!" with a crazy look, and holds it for so long, the "MIN" and "ION" in "ILLUMINATION" lose power and turn off. He stops and looks at the text. He looks at the screen, and says "Whoops!" as the other minions stare in disappointment.
  • Despicable Me 3: Three minions are seen. The one in the middle is holding a flower in a vase. The left minion clears his throat and tries to say "Illumination", but the middle minion knocks him out with a vase. He tries to do the same, but the next minion hits him with a hammer. Bob comes by with the fart gun from the first and second movies. The other minion successfully says the name, and then questions the fart gun, to which Bob sprays gas. The minion faints in disgust. Bob then says "ILLUMINATION!" like in The Secret Life of Pets and chuckles. The fallen minion farts on Bob and he shakes his hand in disgust.
  • The Grinch (trailers):
    • The text is off. Bob turns a flashlight on as if he's saying "Illumination" in that manner, laughing maniacally afterwards. The text suddenly turns on and he runs off in fear.
    • The text appears above at first. One of the minions is seen with a party blower, who is hitting the minion in the distance. He then grabs the minion with the blower, pushing him as they move out and the text drops down.
    • The logo is covered entirely in snow, with snow also falling throughout. Three minions are seen wearing Christmas outfits as they play with tambourines, while one of the minions plays in the snow, shouting out the company name as he sticks out his tongue. This is also seen at the start of Minions Holiday Special.
  • The Grinch: Bob is on the right side of the screen, holding a sparkler, and says "Illumination!". Snowball the rabbit, from The Secret Life of Pets (voiced by Kevin Hart) drops down from the top of the screen and yells "Yeah, ILLUMINATION!", and pyrotechnics suddenly spray over the logo's "stage", burning Bob's feet. Then some sparklers turn on, dousing the flames and covering Snowball in water. Bob gives his sparkler to Snowball, and the logo's text brightens up the screen to start the movie.
  • The Secret Life of Pets 2: A red ball bounces under the logo. Six dogs pull Stuart, who is yelling "Stop-ah! Stop-ah!" at them. The dogs crowd at the ball and Stuart smiles. As the ball bounces off, the dogs face the direction, and Stuart screams "Uh...Illumination!" before he gets pulled away, the dogs barking as they do.

Variants:

  • On the first two trailers for Hop, there's a short version of the Despicable Me variant in which it just shows the minion peeking in, but the text is already there.
  • Some trailers lack the minions, such as the Sing trailer.
  • Starting with the second trailer of Despicable Me 3 and the film itself, "ENTERTAINMENT" is removed.

FX/SFX: The minion(s) and the text.

Music/Sounds: Just the minion(s) (performed by Pierre Coffin) making noises or saying the company name. On the Despicable Me variant, a loud, bombastic three-note fanfare is heard as the logo appears, kinda sounding like the Viacom "Wigga-Wigga" logo. None for the still version.

Music/Sounds Variant: There used to be a version of the logo on Illumination's website that removes the footstep sound effects from the Minion, the fanfare sounds a little different and is louder and a little more bombastic, and the sounds when the Minion falls and crawls off-screen are different. The Minion's sounds are still the same, though.

Availability: Common. Seen on all of the company's movies. Formerly seen on Illumination's website. The Secret Life of Pets prototype variant can be found on Facebook.

Editor's Note: This logo has gained notoriety for its use of the Minions.

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