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Lionsgate Announces 2007 Blu-ray Titles

Posted on Tuesday, January 9, 2007 9:09 AM

Movie studio Lionsgate has announced its lineup of movies they expect to release on Blu-ray high definition disc in 2007. Recent movies include "Crank," "Employee of the Month," and and "Saw III" to follow up their late December release of "The Descent," but most of the rest are either forgettable or catalog titles.

I rather enjoyed "Young Guns" and have it on DVD, but I'm not sure it's one that I would run out and buy in high definition. "Monster's Ball" is notable due to Halle Berry's Oscar-winning performance.

An oddity in the press release (below) is that Lionsgate is bragging about "The Descent" being the first movie "the first disc of either format to employ Picture in Picture." If they are referring to the other HD format, HD DVD, that would seem to be incorrect, as certainly "Batman Begins" used a Picture-in-Picture technique called "In Movie Experience" to provide a PIP display of the actors talking about the scenes as they are playing. Maybe they are comparing themselves to other Blu-ray and standard definition DVD titles...

More titles in high definition is good news, though, so keep them coming, studios!

Press Release

Studio Plans to Have 40 Blu-ray Titles Available by End of 2007 List of Releases Includes Award Winning TV Series WEEDS Along With Theatrical Hits DIRTY DANCING, BASIC INSTINCT and More

SANTA MONICA, Calif., Jan. 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), the leading independent filmed entertainment company, today announced the studio's upcoming slate of titles on the next-generation high-definition Blu-ray Disc (BD). Headlining the announcement is one of the format's first-ever TV DVD releases as the Golden Globe(R)- winning and Emmy(R) Award nominated series WEEDS will be offered in high definition. In addition, Lionsgate will deliver (BD) versions of the top-selling Marvel Animated Series titles ULTIMATE AVENGERS and ULTIMATE AVENGERS 2. The studio will also unveil high definition versions of some of its most popular catalog titles including DIRTY DANCING and BASIC INSTINCT. Further details, including street dates and pricing, will be released at a later date for these and other Blu-ray titles. By end of 2007, the studio will have 40 Blu-ray titles on the market. The announcement was made at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas by Lionsgate President, Steve Beeks.

An early supporter of Blu-ray and the second studio to release titles on Blu-ray, Lionsgate has showcased to consumers the groundbreaking power of the technology in two of the studio's most recent releases -- THE DESCENT and CRANK (which hits stores on January 9). Both movies were released day and date with standard DVD as dual-layer (BD) 50 GB DVDs, setting the bar for maximizing the capabilities of the format. One of the most critically-acclaimed horror movies of 2006, THE DESCENT was the top-selling high definition release in its first week (December 26 - January 1) and boasted the format's third most successful debut to date.

THE DESCENT is the first disc of either format to employ Picture in Picture, taking advantage of the full capacity of the disc, as well as the advanced BD Java Language that allows for seamless branching of multiple video and audio stream. Lionsgate has plans for numerous day and date Blu-ray and standard DVD releases for its theatrical slate throughout 2007 including the upcoming releases of EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH on January 16 and SAW III on January 23.

"There has never been a home entertainment experience available to mass audiences like Blu-ray, and Lionsgate will continue to deliver to consumers our top-line product with sound, audio and extras that are beyond anything they ever could have imagined," said Beeks. "As a company, we have always been at the forefront in utilizing technology to offer consumers the best viewing experience. Blu-ray's technological capabilities take home movie-watching to new levels."

Other upcoming Blu-ray titles from Lionsgate include:

January 2007

  • CRANK (January 9)
  • EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH (January 16)
  • SAW II and III (January 23)

February 2007

  • AMERICAN PSYCHO (February 6)
  • RAMBO FIRST BLOOD (February 6)
  • RESERVOIR DOGS (February 6)
  • YOUNG GUNS (February 6)

Sometime in 2007

  • WEEDS (TV series)
  • THE DEAD ZONE (TV series)
  • PI
  • DUNE

Lionsgate's support for Blu-ray stems from the format's ability to help propel the home entertainment industry to the next level of performance. The studio has always aggressively supported emerging technologies that maximize value to the consumer. Lionsgate was the first studio release product on DVD-9, DVD-18, DVD+CD, the first to utilize Microsoft Windows Media 9 as well as the first studio after Sony to support the UMD format, and one of the frontrunners in acquiring VOD rights throughout its catalog.

About Blu-ray Disc

The Blu-ray Disc format provides nearly five times more data storage than DVD, with an unprecedented 25 GB (single-layer) and 50 GB (dual-layer) of capacity. Blu-ray Disc players are backward compatible with other disc formats and deliver the highest quality high-definition (HD) entertainment, while providing a secure playback environment through the use of the most advanced copy protection available.

Blu-ray Disc was created to support the accelerating convergence between consumer electronics and information technology. The platform can also support numerous film, music, computer and game applications. Sony Computer Entertainment recently announced plans to utilize BD-ROM technology in their next-generation Playstation 3 system.

Blu-ray is supported by more than 170 leading hardware and software manufacturers, including the leading innovators in the CE and IT industries.

About Lionsgate

Lionsgate is the leading independent filmed entertainment studio, winning the 2006 Best Picture Academy Award(R) for CRASH, generating two consecutive years of $300 million-plus domestic theatrical box office, operating a $500 million-plus home entertainment business and producing a broad slate of prime time television series for fiscal 2007. It is a premier producer and distributor of motion pictures, television programming, home entertainment, family entertainment, and video-on-demand content. Its prestigious and prolific library of more than 10,000 titles is a valuable source of stable, recurring revenue and a foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate brand is synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world.

Source: Lionsgate Press Release

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