Sony Pictures Releasing International

From Audiovisual Identity Database

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Descriptions by
V of Doom, Shadeed A. Kelly and TheLogoFan2004

Captures by
CuriousGeorge60, EnormousRat, Sagan Blob, wisp2007, DannyTheMuppetMan and others

Editions by
Various users

Video captures courtesy of
Eric S., thelogoarchive, Mr. Gann, Plasma Storm, ifrequire, The AVTB Archives, and Broken Saw


Columbia TriStar Film Distributors International is the international distribution unit of Sony Pictures Entertainment. The company was formed in 1988 by Columbia Pictures Entertainment to handle international distribution of titles from Columbia Pictures and TriStar Pictures as well as productions from third-parties such as Orion Pictures. The company also distributed local productions being produced by either Columbia or TriStar. In 2005, the company was renamed to Sony Pictures Releasing International. It also operated in Japan until 1992 when the Japanese branch of Sony Pictures began taking over distribution of SPE titles in that country.

Columbia TriStar Film Distributors International

1st Logo (December 21, 1988-December 3, 1993)

Logo: On a nighttime sky background, we see two red boxes fading-in and turning, featuring the '80s print logos of Columbia Pictures and Tri-Star Pictures with "COLUMBIA PICTURES" in between the Torch Lady and on the Tri-Star box, it doesn't have the word "PICTURES" under the triangle. As the boxes faces the center, the print logos appears in solid white. The sky background later turns into a solid black background with the words "Columbia Tri-Star Films" in white lettering (in the Souvenir font used by Columbia in the 1980s-early '90s) fading in below in between the transition effect. The print logo are used in 1993.

Later Variant: The text was later known as "Columbia TriStar Films" by dropping off the hyphen (-) in August 1991 by Sony Pictures Entertainment.


  • An Italian variant also exists with the text on the bottom reading "Columbia Tri-Star Films Italia".
  • A variant with the text on the bottom reading "Columbia Pictures" also exists in some countries such as Brazil and the Philippines.
  • On the Spanish film Las Historias de Puta Mili, there is text above the logo reading "Distribuida Por" (Distributed By), with the text on the bottom reading "Columbia Tri-Star de España" instead of "TriStar". On the trailer for the film, the logo is tinted blue.
  • One version had a orange and purple gradient background with the text "COLUMBIA TRISTAR" and "INTERNATIONAL" with two boxes featuring the 80s Torch Lady print logo and the "Pegasus over Pyramid" (looking like the 1991 Columbia TriStar Home Video logo) fly in from the left to the middle and the logo shining. It was seen on a video showing Sony Pictures Entertainment's plans for Culver City. It's unknown if this was used on international releases of films and TV shows or it was just something used for promotional purposes.
  • On the Italian trailer of Casualties of War, the logo plays in warp-speed.

FX/SFX: Slit-scan animation.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Extremely rare. Was seen on international theatrical releases of films released by Columbia and Tri-Star Pictures, but most current prints of these films might use domestic prints or remove it.

  • The logo first appeared in Compagni di scuola, and made its final appearance in Piccolo grande amore (Pretty Princess; 1993).
  • It was seen on the Pirated VHS Italian of Bram Stoker's Dracula, with the logo preceding to Columbia Pictures.
  • The print logo appears on the international trailer for Solo (1996).

2nd Logo (October 9, 1992-December 17, 1993)

Logo: On the black background, we see the text "Distributed by", with "COLUMBIA TRISTAR FILM DISTRIBUTORS INTERNATIONAL" below it in the white lettering (in the Souvenir font used by Columbia in the 1980s-early '90s).

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Ultimately rare. It was seen on the international prints of Fortress (1992), and Robin Hood: Men in Tights.

3rd Logo (1993-2001)

Logo: We see the text "(DISTRIBUTED BY) COLUMBIA TRISTAR FILMS [country]", often localized, fading in first, then we see a Columbia-like cloud background (which looks like the background from the 1993 TriStar Pictures logo, but it has a mirror effect), with the 1992 print logos of Columbia Pictures and TriStar Pictures fading in. The logo and text would fade-out like the 1992 Columbia Pictures Television logo.


  • A later variant features the cloud background from the 1993 Columbia Pictures logo. The background zooms-out and we later see the 1992 colorized print logos of both Columbia Pictures and TriStar Pictures fading-in with the text "DISTRIBUTED BY COLUMBIA TRISTAR FILM DISTRIBUTORS INTERNATIONAL, INC." below the boxes, this was seen on English-language prints of Columbia TriStar titles.
  • An in-credit version exists with the print Torch Lady and Pegasus box logos with company name and SPE byline.
  • Another in-credit version has the print Torch and Pegasus box logos with text "DISTRIBUTED BY COLUMBIA TRISTAR FILM DISTRIBUTORS INTERNATIONAL" and a copyright stamp under the text on the left side of the print logos.
  • On some Italian films, the words "FILMS ITALIA" replace "FILM DISTRIBUTORS INTERNATIONAL, INC" while the "COLUMBIA TRISTAR" text still remains, although it is a different font below the boxes with the same logo and almost similar to the 1988-93 logo.
  • On the international trailer and TV spots of Escape from Absolom, the logo is brightened than usual.
  • On the Italian TV spot of Godzilla (1998), the logos has both the theatrical versions of the Columbia Pictures and TriStar Pictures logos in two of the boxes, texts and byline included and the text that reads "COLUMBIA TRISTAR FILMS ITALIA" is in a different font.
  • On the Brazilian TV spot of O Auto da Compadecida, the logo is entirely seen with the blue background instead of the cloud background.
  • On the Italian TV spot of Secrets & Lies, the logo is seen inside the theaters, while the text "COLUMBIA TRISTAR FILMS ITALIA" fades in.
  • The logo with the black background and the byline also exists, only seen on the trailers and TV spots for Screamers and Solo (1996).

FX/SFX: Fading and zooming effects. The later variant uses CGI animation for the cloud backdrop.

Music/Sounds: Silent, or the music from any given soundtrack.

  • On the DVD and a Spanish dub of Escape from Absolom (aka No Escape in the US and UK), the Savoy Pictures theme plays at the end of the logo.
  • On the TV airings, and Blu-ray (the latter when you select the Russian dub) prints of Street Fighter, the 1990 Universal Pictures fanfare is heard.

Availability: Ultra rare. Was seen on export theatrical prints of films and various foreign productions produced or released by Columbia Pictures and TriStar Pictures, but most now either use U.S. domestic prints, or have removed or plastered this over.

  • The in-credit logo can be found on Guerra de Canudos.
  • On the theatrical prints (including French VHS and Australian DVD & Blu-ray prints) of Escape from Absolom, the logo has the widescreen version with its original ratio aspect 2.35:1 (which is the different than the Region 2 and Region 4 DVDs with 1.78:1, which has the Savoy Pictures logo).
  • Also seen on some international trailers, such as The Indian in the Cupboard, and My Best Friend's Wedding.
  • It was seen on the foreign prints of Street Fighter.
  • It was spotted on Cronica de un desayuno (A Breakfast Chronicle; 2000). For some reason, the logo is still retained on the Mexican VHS of The Swan Princess.

4th Logo (October 22, 1999-April 13, 2003)

Logo: On a blue background, we see the text "Distributed by", with "COLUMBIA TRISTAR FILM DISTRIBUTORS INTERNATIONAL" below it in the Bank Gothic MD BT font.


  • On an American HBO airing of Spider-Man, the background has a purple gradient to it.
  • A Spanish variant that reads "Distribuida por COLUMBIA TRISTAR FILMS DE ESPAÑA, S.A." exists.
  • A stretch variant of the logo exists.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Can be seen on some films such as Seeing Double, Bats, international prints of Fortress 2: Re-Entry, The Pact of Silence, and a 2007-era HBO airing of Spider-Man. It was also spotted on the international trailers for American Psycho, Simon Sez, and FearDotCom.

5th Logo (2001-2005)

Logo: On a black background, there is a silver light that gets a little brighter, then the text "COLUMBIA TRISTAR" in Bank Gothic MD BT fades in and zooms out. The silver light later forms a silver line forming "FILM DISTRIBUTORS INTERNATIONAL" in smaller lettering below the line. The logo shines while the entire text zooms in slowly as the light dims inside the line.


  • On The Punisher, the logo's text turns red and segues to the 2002 Marvel logo. At the end of the credits, the logo is seen with the text "RELEASED BY" above it and the byline "a SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT company" on the bottom, though it doesn't have a silver line.
  • On Suspect Zero, the logo is in warp speed.

FX/SFX: Basic 2D effects.

Music/Sounds: Silent or the film's opening theme.

  • On some American TV airings of The Punisher, the 2004 Lionsgate theme is heard due to sloppy error.

Availability: Very rare in Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia, but extremely rare in the U.S. Seen on international theatrical prints of films produced or distributed by Columbia/TriStar/Screen Gems. Like the previous logos, most prints either use U.S. domestic versions, have this removed, or plastered this over. Seen on foreign prints of The Punisher, Suspect Zero and Mindhunters. It is unknown if this logo was seen international theatrical prints of Feardotcom, as the DVD and VHS releases do not have the logo. It was also reportedly seen on some foreign copies of Toyko Godfathers, but most prints have ether the Destination Films, TriStar Pictures, or Sony Pictures Releasing Japan logos. Around 2005, this was phased out and replaced with the Sony Pictures Releasing International logo after the demise of the Columbia TriStar label.

Sony Pictures Releasing International

(2005- )

Logo: It's exactly the same as the Sony Pictures Home Entertainment logo, except "RELEASING INTERNATIONAL" replaces "HOME ENTERTAINMENT".


  • A Spanish variant exists where the logo freeze-frames before "INTERNATIONAL" can appear and "Distribuida por Sony Pictures Releasing de España, S.A." appears below the logo, along with the Sony Pictures Entertainment byline, all in Sony's font.
  • An open-matte fullscreen version of the logo has been spotted in the trailer for the 40th anniversary theatrical re-release of Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
  • On the trailer of the Spanish film Veronica, the logo is red tinted. On the teaser trailer for the film, the logo speeds up.
  • Another variant exists where only "RELEASING" appears.
  • A print version of this logo exists.
  • Starting with the international release of Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero, the 2021 Sony Entertainment logo now transitions to this one.

FX/SFX: CGI animation. Something to note is that in the Spanish variant, the freeze-frame is made even more obvious due to the fact that "RELEASING" has not even finished fading in when the bottom text appears and the animation halts, making the "RELEASING" text darker than the rest.

Music/Sounds: Same as the SPHE logo.

Music/Sounds Variant: On The Squid and the Whale, the logo is silent.

Availability: Very rare in the U.S. and Canada, but common outside it. It can be seen on The Squid and The Whale, and on most prints (DVDs and Blu-rays) of Paprika after the Sony Pictures Classics logo (on streaming prints, only the latter is shown before the Madhouse logo). This logo also makes an appearance on the international IMAX 3D version of Resident Evil: Afterlife (may be on the 3D Blu-ray release as well). It was spotted on international trailer for Punisher: War Zone, with the logo preceding to Lionsgate and Marvel. The "RELEASING" variant can be spotted on the 2015 Japanese film Shinjuku Swan.

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