So, with Warner Bros. going Blu-ray exclusive it left Paramount and Universal as the only major film studios still supporting HD DVD in the high definition format war. When things began Paramount, like Warner, supported both formats, but it quickly dropped it’s support of Blu-ray and went HD DVD exclusive just prior to the release of Transformers. Universal, on the other hand, is the only studio to support HD DVD, and HD DVD alone, since the outset. Paramount has an exclusive contract to remain exclusive to HD DVD for the rest of 2008. As for Universal, I have an email out now to see what their status is, but I believe they have simply chosen to support HD DVD and don’t have any contracts in place.
The question is, now that Paramount and Universal stand alone up against Disney, Fox, Warner Bros. and Sony whom all four support Blu-ray exclusively, what is to come of this format war?
Well, since the Warner announcement, Universal, to my knowledge, has not made any statements, but an article at Video Business lets us know that Paramount isn’t backing off, not in the slightest. In fact they are going to remain quite aggressive.
Personally, my biggest concern was the original “Star Trek” series on HD DVD. Paramount’s release of the first season on HD DVD was one of the most impressive DVD packages I received in 2007 and it would have killed me had they not released the next two seasons in the same fashion as the HD DVD season sitting next to my two other DVD sets just looks incomplete. Luckily Video Business tells us that Paramount’s first high-definition TV release, the Nov. 20 HD DVD release of Star Trek: Season One, will reach 100,000 units sold. That momentum has led the company to commit to releasing all subsequent “Star Trek” seasons on high-def, amounting to two more HD DVD titles.
“I think fans are harder core and have greater loyalty for TV DVD than they do for film,” said Ken Ross, executive VP and general manager at CBS DVD. “You have this long-term relationship with a show, where in a season, you might visit with it 20 times a year. A movie might just be a two-hour experience.”
So what is the next CBS title speculated to hit HD DVD? Why “CSI” of course, although it hasn’t been confirmed, Ross does say “it lends itself to high-def with its magnificent effects.”
Along with my “Star Trek” HD DVD set I have two other TV shows on HD DVD and those are “Battlestar Galactica” and “Heroes”, all three seasons are impressive presentations with “Battlestar” being the least impressive in terms of special features, but as far as presentation goes they are all three amazing.