Orbis Communications

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Logo descriptions by Matt Williams
Logo captures by Eric S. and Shadeed A. Kelly
Video capture courtesy of Eric S.

Orbis Communications was a television distribution company that was founded in 1984 by Robert Turner. On August 28, 1987, Orbis became a wholly owned subsidiary of Carolco Pictures after Turner sold Orbis for $15.4 million. On September 17, 1991, Multimedia, Inc. acquired the assets of Orbis including the TV movies and the first-run syndication rights to The Joker's Wild and The $100,000 Pyramid hosted by John Davidson. Orbis would later be merged into Carolco's TV unit in 1991. Today, most of the TV movies and series are in the hands of other companies, such as Movin' On, which is owned by the Peter Rodgers Organization and the Orbis-distributed Live Aid concert, which is now held by the Warner Music Group. In the late '80s and early '90s, Orbis Communications held the television rights to the Hemdale library.

1st Logo
(June 19, 1984-March 12, 1988)
Orbis Communications

Nicknames: "Spinning Atom", "Early CGI Atom"

Logo: We see a picture of an atom, which spins clockwise. The atom zooms in, and then the picture flashes. Two rings appear, one of them partially cut at the side. (They also represent the initials "OC") The two rings rotate to the left of the screen, where the words "RBIS OMMUNICATIONS"(reads as "ORBIS COMMUNICATIONS)slide in from the side of the rings.

FX/SFX: The spinning atom, bright flash and name slide-in.

Music/Sounds: A high synthesized keyboard fanfare, with wind-type sounds in the background.

Availability: Very rare. Was on various syndicated programs, including The Spiral Zone and on season 1's The Kidsongs TV Show along with the Warner Bros. Records logo. Was recently spotted on the DVD of the TV pilot of Graffiti Rock. It was also seen on some episodes of Movin' On on RTV. Also seen on the series Hangin' In. This strangely appeared at the start of a 1990 HBO airing of the 1982 TV special Leadfoot. You might also find this on old television prints of films from Pacific International Enterprises.

Editor's Note: This logo resembles a logo for a technology company more than anything else. It's an interesting logo, however.

2nd Logo
(April 4, 1988-March 8, 1991)

Orbis: 1988

Nickname: "Galaxy Beam Lights"

Logo: We start off on some random planet in the middle of some unknown galaxy. We see two beams of light hit some pink light to form the Orbis Communications atom-shaped logo with the byline "A CAROLCO PICTURES COMPANY" at the bottom of the Orbis Communications logo. After the logo forms from a yellow beam of light going left to right, we see a small beam of light coming from bottom to top and two others about the same size going from left to right.

FX/SFX:The sound effects, animation, and music made for this logo.

Music/Sounds: Some electronic sounds which are for the beams and lasers, and the music is a deep, but soothing synthesizer tune.

Availability: Extinct. Only known to appear on the 1990 revival of The Joker's Wild,the short-lived 1991 revival of The $100,000 Pyramid ,and a late 80s-early 90's syndicated print of the film
Defence of the Realm.

Editor's Note: The changing of the logo's setting now makes it seem more like a potential rival to AT&T. If there wasn't a Carolco byline at the end, there definitely would've been concerns.

3rd Logo

Logo: It's in-credit text that reads:
Orbis-$100K Pyramid: 1991

Distributed by

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: The end title theme of the show.

Availability: Extinct. Seen only on the 1991 short-lived revival of The $100,000 Pyramid with John Davidson.

Editor's Note: TBA.