Brow Beat

The Evolution of the MGM Lion    

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s roaring lion logo is iconic, and it’s taken a long journey—and several different lions—to get to the one we all now know and love. (His name is Leo.)

This video history made by Movie Munchies breaks down all the incremental changes from along the way. As chronicled in the video, the lion’s name back in the silent era was Slats. But instead of roaring or looking ferocious, good ol’ Slats just kind of sat there looking confused—or, at most, mustered a half-hearted snarl. When silent film gave way to sound, MGM started using more loquacious lions, giving us the roar. But now, the roar used is electronically produced. Looking back at the old cats, you might wonder whether over the decades we’ve lost some of their original charm.