Associated Artists Productions

Compiled by James Fabiano

1st Logo
(Dates unknown, though the logos were seen in the '50s and '60s)

Nickname: "AAP"

History - "What Was AAP?": For that answer we turn to some rec.arts.animation posts.....

From Thomas Reed: I believe it served the same purpose as Movietime and National Telefilm Associates (NTA) served for live action films.

See, back in the early 50's, it was considered "shameful" by the movie studios to have their real studio names on films run on television. Movie studios saw themselves in a death struggle with the boob tube, and to actually release anything to television with the studios' real logos was treason to the movie industry.

So, the studios only released their pre-1948 movies to TV (this being the date when studios were forced to dump their ownership of movie theaters, which is somehow legally important to the issue). And they had NTA and Movietime put their logos on the movie - sometimes even covering up the studio copyright notice inside the movie's credits.

Brian adds: A.A.P. was the company that purchased the rights to the Paramount POPEYE cartoons and the pre-1948 color Warner Bros. cartoons, to sell them to television in the 1950s. While most of these packages were sold to local TV stations, arrangements were also made with different companies and ad agencies to sponsor the programs on a regional or national basis.

When A.A.P. purchased the cartoons, the familiar A.A.P. leader was added when new negative prints were struck for distribution.

And Jerry Beck says: A.A.P. was absorbed by United Artists in the late 1950s (The library included ALL WB shorts (including live action) and the WB pre 1950 feature films. Turner purchased this library along with the pre-1985 MGM library from MGM/UA. What's funny is that no on has ever removed those titles from the prints -- many at UA and now Turner believe the A.A.P. titles ARE the original titles! I love that Fred Ladd colorized the A.A.P. logo on the Popeye cartoons -- it's ridiculous!

Logo: The initials "a.a.p." appear in lowercase, with the "p" having a very long stem. Alongside the "p's" stem the words "ASSOCIATED ARTISTS PRODUCTIONS INC." appear, and below all that is the word "Presents" written in cursive. At the end of a short, the logo appears with the following message above it: "This picture has been presented by" Also, the full name of the company appears horizontally under the initials, with a space where the "p's" stem is.

FX: None, it's a still logo

Cheesy Factor: Some of the colors they used for the logo when colorizing the Popeye shorts.

Music: The beginning or end of the music in whatever short has the logo, depending on where the logo appears.

Availability: Can still be seen on the Fleischer Popeye shorts when they're seen on Cartoon Network.

(Note: See the Availability section on the 2nd logo for other details)

Scare Factor: Low, pretty innocuous being a still logo and all. If the short uses dramatic music when it comes up, though, that may make one a little antsy.

2nd Logo
(Dates unknown, though the logos were seen in the '50s and '60s)

Nicknames: "AAP," "That logo at the beginning of Popeye and Looney Tunes"

Logo: Kind of a more three-dimensional look compared to the first. The blue background has a bumpy look to it, and the logo itself (which is basically the same as #1) is yellow and 3D. In the opening, the initials back away a bit, and then the words "Associated Artists Productions presents" appear, along with characters from whatever short is coming up (either Popeye or Warner Bros.) The ending is the same as the first, except the placement of the company's name is different (it appears on two lines at the left of the "p's" stem.

More Background: It should be noted that the AAP logo was dubbed onto shorts for presentation on television; however, where they usually mask the Paramount logos completely for Popeye, you still see the WB shield opening on the WB shorts. Also, some Famous Studios Popeye shorts made it to TV with the Paramount ID intact. Why all this happens is explained here by Dave Mackey (from rec.arts.animation):

When Paramount sold off their shorts to television, there was a stipulation that all references to Paramount be removed. The pre-1950 cartoons including the Fleischers were sold to an outfit called UM&M TV Corp., and they too do not have Paramount logos.

However, there are a few Popeye cartoons from 1956-1957 that were never released with AAP titles because they were released after AAP's acquisition of the earlier titles. More recently some older cartoons have had their print material upgraded to original-title versions, possibly done by current rights-holder Turner Entertainment Corp., who acquired the cartoons when it bought the MGM/UA library.

That's [WB keeping its logos on the shorts] more a function of Warner Bros.' reissuing the cartoons as Blue Ribbon Specials. AAP did not touch the end titles of the Warner Bros. cartoons. Apparently, Warner Bros. had no such stipulation that their logos be removed when AAP sent the cartoons into television in the late 1950's. When originally theatrically issued, EVERY Looney Tunes release from about 1937 through the mid-1940's ended with Porky Pig's signoff. They experimented with a Bugs signoff for a brief while until 1945, when beginning with "Acrobatty Bunny" they went to an instrumental end title with no character signoff.

FX/Cheesy Factor: The backing letters.

Music: Like Logo #1, it's music related to the short; in the case of Popeye, it's the beginning of his theme (Famous Studios era). For WB, it's the Looney Tunes theme. The ending logo is used for the Popeye shorts only, and the music is an abridged version of "Popeye the Sailor Man."

Availability: You may still see this logo when Cartoon Network shows Popeye or Looney Tunes shorts. However, CN is currently attempting to restore many shorts, meaning the return of their original logos rather than the AAP ones. So it may not be as available as it once was. You may still see the logo if any other stations are still showing Popeye or WB cartoons.

Scare Factor: Well I used to find the moving letters weird, but your mileage may vary on that one. It also depends again on the music being used; for example, if the WB shield's "BOWWWWW!" sound effect scared you, chances are you wouldn't like it here either.

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