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Columbia Pictures

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Published on Oct 27, 2007

The Columbia logo

Columbia's logo, a lady carrying a torch, originally appeared in 1924. The first model for the logo is unknown, although Bette Davis claimed that Claudia Dell was used.[3]

In 1936, the logo was somewhat changed, with the Columbia "Torch Lady" appearing with shimmering light behind her. This logo was used for a total of 40 years. 1976's Taxi Driver was one of the last films to use the "Torch Lady" in her classic appearance.

In 1976, Columbia (like other studios) experimented with a new logo. It began with the familiar lady with a torch, but the torch-light rays then formed an abstract blue semi-circle depicting the top half of the rays of light, with the name of the studio appearing under it. The television counterpart used only the latter part of the logo, and the semi-circle was either orange or red.

This logo was replaced with a modernized version of the "Torch Lady" in 1981. After Columbia's purchase by Coca-Cola, radio talk-show host Michael Jackson of KABC-AM joked that the Torch Lady should be holding a Coke bottle instead.[citation needed]

In 1993, the logo was repainted digitally by New Orleans artist Michael Deas. It has been rumored that Annette Bening was the model, but in fact Deas used a model named Jenny Joseph

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