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A camera trick used at the end of an episode or movie, wherein the view pans up to the sky upon conclusion of a story arc. The characters usually look up along with the viewer, too, or are implied to.

The sky is a powerful symbol in itself. Here are just a few uses:

  • Clear blue sky (white clouds optional) promises happiness and freedom, just the things you expect from a Happy Ending.
  • Stormy, ominous sky, on the other hand, indicates that trouble is brewing.
  • Sunrise sky stands for renovation and a new beginning.
  • Sunset marks a conclusion and definite ending or death.
  • Night sky with visible stars has a similar meaning to clear daytime sky with an additional touch of eternity.
  • Shooting stars promise the fulfillment of wishes.
  • Birds and airplanes stand for unreachable things but also, freedom.

Compare Grasp the Sun.

Examples of Pan-Up-To-The-Sky Ending include:

Anime & Manga


  • Scott Pilgrim vs. the World gives us the sky with a "Continue?" and countdown, evoking arcade games. At zero, the credits begin.
  • Nashville ends with a pan to a blue sky.
  • Most of the Harry Potter films end this way.
  • The film of City of Ember ends with a bright blue morning sky, which is especially meaningful because the characters have spent their entire lives living in an underground city, never knowing there was anything different or that there was such a thing as the sun or sky.
  • Easy A.


Live Action TV

Video Games

  • Several endings of Tsukihime contain this (Akiha True, Hisui True, and Hisui Good, possibly others), as well as the Epilogue.
  • The nighttime and shooting star [1] version of this is part of Mega Man Zero 4's ending.
  • Wild Arms 1 ends in this manner, complete with all three protagonists looking up to the sky.
  • The nighttime version of this is the final shot of Sonic the Hedgehog 2006's ending.
  • The Golden Ending of The Reconstruction ends with the camera panning up into the night sky.
  • The ending of Super Mario Galaxy 2 (first time only) ends with a shot of a blue comet streaking across the night sky. Further completions of the final Bowser level results in a green comet in the ending.

Western Animation


  1. actually pieces of Ragnarok
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