United States/Canada Edit
1978-June 1980 Edit
Warning: We see the warning text on the same blue background as the late 1970s/early 1980s Paramount Home Video logo, which fades to this.
FX/SFX: The fading from the logo to the warning.
Availability: Extremely rare. It can be seen on Betamax releases, as well as a few other VHS releases that have the first Paramount Home Video logo.
Scare Factor: None. In no way is it scary, but it is deemed boring.
July 1980-May 10, 1989; 1998 Edit
Nicknames: "Acid Trip", "Taste the Rainbow"
Warning: On a background of changing colors (green, yellow, red, pink, purple, blue, and then green again) [ala 1989-2005 MGM/UA Home Video logo and 1997-2006 Sony Wonder Stay Tuned ID] appears the warning text in white, with large lettering in an ITC Serif Gothic font.
- An early variant exists where the text is smaller, is in Bauhaus 93, has some punctuation, and is yellow instead of white.
- A Japanese version also exists. Here, the text has black outlines.
- On B&W releases such as the 1981 VHS of The Elephant Man, the 1986 VHS of Bob Dylan: Don't Look Back, the 1988 VHS of Hamlet, and the 1989 VHS releases of Wings and A Night to Remember, the warning is in black and white.
Cheesy Factor: For the second variant, there is punctuation missing. The first period, the hyphen, and the comma are gone.
FX/SFX: The changing colors.
Availability: It can be seen on all releases from the era, including Tucker: The Man and His Dream, U2: Rattle and Hum, Top Gun, Children of a Lesser God, The Blue Iguana, and Beverly Hills Cop II. The early variant can be seen on earlier tapes with this warning, such as One-Eyed Jacks, Downhill Racer, Meatballs, some pre-1989 releases of Grease, and 1980s Star Trek releases (with "Paramount HOME VIDEO" on the side, with the Gulf+Westen print mountain logo on the other).
Scare Factor: Low.
May 17, 1989-present EditWarning: Being jarringly cut to from the era's Feature Presentation ID, we see the warning text (in an ITC Korinna font) over a mauve/white gradient wallpaper of Paramount logos (four on the top and bottom, three in the middle).
- May 17-late 1989: A Gulf+Western Company
- Late 1989-1995: A Paramount Communications Company (either in sans serif or the different font used after 1992)
- 1995-2006: A Viacom Company (in the Viacom \/\/|GG/\-\/\/|GG/\ font)
- Later in 1989, the wallpaper's color was changed to a dark blue gradient, and the Paramountains are smaller (with five mountains in the middle row rather than three). At the same time, a shadow effect was applied to the text, while still keeping the ITC Korinna font.
- The font of the text was changed to BTC Benguiat Medium in 1995.
- Sometimes, the wallpaper would be in a light/dark gray gradient, and would have more warning text as well. This can be seen on most DVD releases from 1999 through 2002, though it makes a surprise appearance on all of the 2005 John Wayne Collection DVDs, which are most likely reprints.
- A rare variant exists on promotional tapes that asks the viewer to call a certain telephone number and to help prevent video piracy, while also telling them that the VHS is not for resale. The text also scrolls upward. On the demo tape of Dollman vs. Demonic Toys, the text is in a different font, the top text says "This videocassette is a promotional copy and shall forever remain the property of Paramount Pictures Corporation", and there's no "Feature Presentation" that follows it. On Hostage and You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown, the text is in a different font. The easiest way to find a VHS with this is to find a Paramount VHS with a blue sticker (or red if it's from Canada) telling them that it is a promotional copy, and that the tape has a simple looking label that also says it.
- An incredibly rare variant exists mainly on awards consideration tapes that tell the viewer that the tape is loaned for personal review. This was seen on the screener tape of Alfie (2004). An earlier version of this warning exists that is cut to from the Feature Presentation ID instead of fading in and has differently-arranged warning text. This version was spotted on the screener tape of Rules of Engagement. There may exist a 90th Anniversary variant of this warning, and, if found, may appear on the awards screener tapes of Paramount films released in 2002, such as Narc.
- A Canadian version exists, with the word "WARNING" in red, underlined in white, along with modified warning text. Tapes from 1989-1995 use a sans-serif font.
- There is a version of this warning screen where the text is on a black background. This can be found on a few PBS releases such as the Paramount versions of Teletubbies: Oooh! Springtime Surprises and Magical Moments, Boohbah: Big Windows, Cyberchase: The Snelfu Snafu and Teletubbies: Go! Exercise with the Teletubbies.
- There is a rare version of this warning where the warning is in a different font and the background is purple. This version can be seen on a few PBS releases from Paramount such as Teletubbies: Again-Again! and Caillou: Caillou at Play.
- A rare variant exists where the warning screen just fades or cuts in from black. This appears on the VHS of Titanic (Cassette #1), the 1991 VHS of Raiders of the Lost Ark, the 1989 VHS of The Shootist, some Star Trek: The Animated Series tapes, the 1991 Laserdisc of Apocalypse Now, the 1989 Laserdisc of The Naked Gun, some PBS Kids VHS releases distributed by Paramount such as Boohbah: Comfy Armchair (though the promotional copy includes the "Feature Presentation" ID) and Snowman, Cyberchase: Totally Rad!, the alternate VHS print of The Truman Show, the 1997 releases of The Godfather trilogy, the French Canadian release of Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, and cassettes of Cheers and Star Trek: The Next Generation (and presumably other Paramount Television shows) released through Columbia House.
- A variant from 2002 has the wallpaper removed, therefore making the background a plain blue color, while, of course, leaving the warning text in place. This can be seen on VHS releases that have the 90th Anniversary version of the era's Feature Presentation ID.
- An even rarer version that combines the scrolling demo tape text with the 2002 variant background has been spotted on the demo tape of Hey Arnold!: The Movie.
- Starting in 2002, the DVD version background has been changed to solid purple. Some DVDs have the background in an eggplant color. A Spanish-language (or in some cases, French-language) screen follows it, though on most releases, only the first screen is used.
- A very rare variant can be found on French Canadian tapes from 1995 until about 2001. However, unlike other variants, the warning screen's background is a still image of the beginning of the Feature Presentation ID.
- Sometimes, the text is spaced. This can be found on wide-screen DVDs.
- Black-and-white versions of the first two warnings exist on 1989 reprints of Sunset Boulevard, The Desperate Hours, The Delicate Delinquent (all on VHS) and The Courageous Dr. Christian (on Laserdisc), and the 1990 VHS reprint of The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.
- On CBS DVD and Blu-Ray releases, a variant exists where the warning text is upon a black background, though the text is either in Arial (on releases such as Mannix: The First Season) or ITC Korinna (on the Blu-Rays of all three seasons of Star Trek: The Original Series).
FX/SFX: The jarring cut from the Feature Presentation ID to the warning. For the demo and French Canadian variants, the text scrolls up.
Cheesy Factor: The first version of this warning has the same text as the later variant of the last warning, which lacked some punctuation. Later in 1989, the first period returned, but not the rest of the punctuation. The purple background variant is very ugly, as it looks homemade. Also, there are two grammatical errors in the DVD/Blu-Ray warning; "CONTENTS" shouldn't be plural, and there should be a comma and "and" between the first two sentences, therefore rendering the text as "This video device is licensed for private home viewing only, and any distribution outside, etc.".
Music/Sounds: None, unless you count the fade out of the Paramount fanfare.
Music/Sounds Variant: On Descriptive Video Service VHS's, a DVS narrator says the on-screen warning text by usually saying "Words appear" first. For example, Wendie Sakakeeny says the on-screen text on the 1990 and 1993 DVS VHS releases of Top Gun without saying "Words appear" first.
Availability: Like the Feature Presentation bumper that preceded it (except when the warning faded in from black), this appeared on all VHS releases from the era. The original variant is the toughest find, but can be found on releases with the Gulf+Western version of the era's FP ID, such as Coming to America (on which it and the Coming Attractions and FP IDs first appeared) and The Naked Gun: From the Files of the Police Squad!. The later variants are easier to find, and can be found on releases such as A Charlie Brown Christmas, Congo, The Real Macaw, Jade, Blue Chips, Wayne's World, Ghost, all Rugrats VHS releases (excluding Christmas, which has the 90th Anniversary variant), Forrest Gump, Faeries, Dragonworld, Without a Paddle, The First Wives Club, D.A.R.Y.L., and Braveheart. Very surprisingly, no warning of any kind appears on the 2001 DVD of Apocalypse Now Redux and the 2002 box set of The Godfather trilogy.
Scare Factor: None, unless you wish to count the jarring cut from the Feature Presentation ID to the warning. The font of the text on the original and Paramount Communications variants can also creep some out.
1989 (Alternate) Edit
Nicknames: "Another Acid Trip", "Taste the Rainbow Again"
Warning: On a gradient color-changing background, we see slightly different warning text in white, and in a Times New Roman font.
FX/SFX: Same as the second warning screen.
Cheesy Factor: What's so wrong with another reusing of the exact text from all the previous bumpers?
Availability: Extremely rare. Spotted on a 1989 VHS release of Star Trek: The Animated Series - Volume Five.
Scare Factor: Low.
1990-1992 (Prism era)Edit
Warning: Same as the 1984 Prism Entertainment FBI warning.
Cheesy Factor: Everything is badly grainy.
Availability: This appears on Paramount releases co-distributed by Prism Entertainment, such as Aftershock, Out of Sight, Out of Mind, and Red Blooded American Girl.
Scare Factor: Like most warnings in this format, low to medium. The cheap graininess can also unnerve some.
Warning: Same as the 2011 Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment FBI Anti-Piracy warning.
Availability: Current. Seen on newer Paramount DVDs and Blu-Ray Discs.
Scare Factor: None.
International versions Edit
Non-USA, general Edit
See the CIC Video Warning Screens page for the description.
United Kingdom Edit
See the CIC Video Warning Screens page for the description.
2000-present EditWarning: Over a blue wallpaper of Paramount logos appears the standard warning in a Futura font.
- DVD releases have the text in an Arial font.
- At the end of VHS releases, there is an expanded warning, which scrolls upward.
FX/SFX: None, except for the text scrolling in the end-of-tape variant.
Cheesy Factor: "Oil rigs" is read as "oilrigs", and like the Aries Video and HBO Home Video warnings, it says "editing".
Availability: Seen on some Paramount Home Entertainment releases in the UK.
Scare Factor: None.
Warning: The 1986-2003 Paramount Pictures logo animates, but then it backs away, revealing itself inside a VCR. Some tape appears with the word "WARNING" scrolling on it. We see several shots, in sync with the music. We then see one more shot close up to the filmstrip that lasts for the rest of the warning. The warning text then appears at the bottom in an ITC Coundit font.
Variant: An end-of-release variant shows the zoomed out filmstrip from a different angle, and has more detailed warning text scrolling upward.
FX/SFX: The filmstrips moving in a possible mix of CGI and live-action.
Cheesy Factor: The warning still says "editing".
Music/Sounds: A piano-jazz tune, with the sounds of the VCR as background noise. The final part of the music is an ascending tune played on a piano. The end-of-release variant only has the VCR's sounds.
Availability: Common in the UK and Ireland.
Scare Factor: Low, as it may startle you the first time that you see it, but it is harmless.
Canadian French Edit
Warning: On a teal background, we see yellow French-Canadian warning text, after which it cuts to the name of the movie.
FX/SFX: None, unless you count the cutting.
Availability: Seen on a 1986 French-Canadian release of Beverly Hills Cop.
Scare Factor: None to minimal.