On March 1, 1976, Avco Embassy Pictures Corporation sold their broadcasting division to media company Multimedia, Inc., who renamed it to "Multimedia Entertainment" (initially as "Multimedia Program Productions, Inc."). From 1976-1984, the TV shows would use in-credit text to Multimedia Entertainment. Multimedia, Inc. was sold to Gannett in 1995 and Gannett, Inc. sold Multimedia Entertainment company in 1996 to Universal Studios. Multimedia Entertainment was folded into Universal Television Enterprises (now "NBCUniversal Television Distribution") in 1997.
1st Logo (1976-1984)
Logo: Superimposed in the credits of Donahue, we see the following text:
PROGRAM PRODUCTIONS, INC.
Music/Sounds: The closing theme of Donahue.
Availability: Extinct. It was seen on Donahue episodes of the time.
Editor's Note: None.
2nd Logo (1980-1983)
Nicknames: "Circle M", "Multimedia M", "Scanimate M"
Logo: On a purple background, we see some kind of shiny orange spot. Over it, we see a salmon black-outlined emblem consisting of many triangular wedges that make up a circle, with the letter "m" on the center of the formation. The words "A MULTIMEDIA PROGRAM PRODUCTION PRESENTATION", also in a salmon font with a black outline, are under the logo.
Availability: Extinct. This was seen on Melinda's Blind and possibly other syndicated programs under the Young People's Specials banner.
Editor's Note: This logo was made on a Scanimation computer, but it's nothing special beyond that.
3rd Logo (1983-1994)
Nicknames: "Circle M II", "Multimedia M II", "Metallic Circle M"
Logo: On a blue background, we see the same emblem as the previous logo, but in silver and with the text "MULTIMEDIA Entertainment" instead of the letter "m", zooming out to the right center of the screen. The aforementioned "m" replaces the company name, then about a dozen copies of "MULTIMEDIA" emerge from the top and bottom beside the logo to make one whole version of the name. Then the words "A Division Of" and "INC." appear above and below the company name to state, "A Division Of MULTIMEDIA INC.".
- There is a rare variant where the logo has a black background and the company name doesn't appear within the logo as it zooms out. This was also seen at the end of news broadcasts on Multimedia-owned WLWT5 (Cincinnati, OH) during the late 1980s.
- Sometimes, a copyright stamp faded-in below the logo.
- A short version exists that starts with the dozen copies of "MULTIMEDIA" emerging.
- An early variant has "Distributed by MULTIMEDIA Program Productions" inside the circle, with "Distributed By" in light blue and "Multimedia Program Productions" appearing stacked. The animation plays out normally in this variant.
- On the talk show Rush Limbaugh, a special variant exists where a superimposed picture of a man with a hat, wearing a striped shirt appears above the copyright year. The text "Multimedia Entertainment" changes to "And Tacos For All.". It then changes back to "Multimedia Entertainment" before fading to black.
FX/SFX: The logo zooming out, a dozen "MULTIMEDIA" from top and bottom merging, the other text appearing, and the logo shining.
Music/Sounds: A synthesized humming noise, accompanied by a pin drop-like synth sound when the text "Multimedia Entertainment" transforms into the lowercase letter "m", followed by a 5-note synth tune, culminating in another pin drop-like sound when the the logo is finished.
- Some episodes of Donahue have an announcer saying "The preceding program was pre-recorded". only the humming sound is heard here with a different pin drop sound.
- Sometimes, this logo is silent or the closing theme plays over it.
- On A&E's Mysteries of the Bible, we hear a five-note acoustic guitar tune, then a five-note orchestra fanfare.
- On the talk show Rush Limbaugh, after its logo music finishes, different music is played when the copyright stamp fades-in.
- This can be spotted on pre-late 1994 episodes of Sally Jesse Raphael, Jerry Springer and Donahue on Nosey TV, and Season 2 episodes of The $100,000 Pyramid with John Davidson.
- This was also seen on Mysteries of the Bible from A&E Home Video, so you might find it there.
Editor's Note: It's a noble attempt at early 3D animation, and it remains a favorite for its animation and jingle.
4th Logo (1994-May 1997)
Nicknames: "Circle M III", "Multimedia M III", "CGI Metallic Circle M", "CGI Multimedia M", "CGI Circle M"
Logo: Against a dark blue background, we see a rippling pattern. The emblem from the previous logos falls into the ripple, then flies out to the top center of a navy blue background. The text "MULTIMEDIA ENTERTAINMENT" flies in, with "MULTIMEDIA" coming in from the right and "ENTERTAINMENT" coming in from the left. "A Division of Multimedia, Inc." in a Roman font appears below. All the objects seem to have a "blurring" effect as they move.
- There is also a shorter version of this logo, which starts with the M logo being already formed and zooming out.
- There was a variant used in a August 1994 corporate presentation for WLWT, the NBC affiliate in Cincinnati, Ohio, where talk show host Jerry Springer was a reporter from the early 1980s until 1993, when Springer's talk show moved to its second home at the NBC Tower in Chicago, Illinois. It is like the standard Multimedia logo of the time, but it has the word "BROADCASTING" in place of "ENTERTAINMENT".
FX/SFX: The blur, the ripples, the logo falling, the flying text, and the text appearing.
Music/Sounds: Same as the last logo, but less noisy. The "BROADCASTING" variant uses a generic closing theme of the show.
Availability: Ultra rare.
- It was seen on Crook and Chase episodes from that era, when they were seen on My Family TV.
- It might be seen on episodes of Donahue from the era, Sally Jessy Raphael, Rush Limbaugh, and Jerry Springer from the era.
- This logo was replaced with the bylineless 1997 Universal Pictures logo.
- Episodes of Jerry Springer and Sally Jessy Raphael which feature this logo may be viewed on nosey.com, however two Springer episodes had this logo plastered by either the long 1998 Universal Television Enterprises logo or the 2004 NBC Universal Television Distribution logo.
Editor's Note: A much improved effort from Multimedia with some sharp CGI with sometimes the use of the memorable tune from its predecessor.