(22 August 2012, Johannesburg) Africa is the first continent, outside of the US, to celebrate Universal Pictures's centenary; an iconic silver globe, a replica of the original at Universal Studios in Los Angeles, was constructed (to scale) by Continental Outdoor Media, and has travelled to all of South Africa's main international airports.
The spokesperson for Universal Pictures, Stefan Rheeder, said, "Universal Pictures has brought us memorable entertainment for a long time: ET, Jurassic Park, Jaws and, Snow White and the Huntsman are a few that come to mind. We thus thought that a standard billboard wasn't quite going to capture Universal Pictures' enormous effect it has had on history and culture. In addition, we are one of the few countries that actually celebrated Universal's 100th birthday and so we wanted to make an impact."
He added that the iconic globe is somewhat of a tourist attraction, with people regularly posing for photos in front of the 'statue'. At night, the globe is replete with smoke and blue light.
The Universal globe has travelled to King Shaka International Airport in Durban, then to OR Tambo in Johannesburg, then to Cape Town International and finally, coming to rest at the Cape Town Film Studio in December.
Continental Outdoor Media's client, Nu Metro, oversees the home entertainment division for Universal Pictures in South Africa.
Continental operations manager Andrew Hinks explained how the globe was made: "The Universal globe comprises rolled steel circular hollow sections. The steelwork is formed to create 16 segments and is fitted together on site to form the 6m diameter globe. The globe is supported on a hollow pipe which is in turn fitted to a removable foundation which can be reused at the various site locations.
The structure is illuminated using six 400W metal halide light fittings and the wrap enclosing the structure prevents any vandalism."
The entertaining video of the construction of the Universal Pictures globe can be accessed via the link below: