Lionsgate, 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®- winning and Emmy® 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:
* Crank (January 9)
* Employee of the Month (January 16)
* Saw II and Saw III (January 23)
* American Psycho (February 6)
* Rambo: First Blood (February 6)
* Reservoir Dogs (February 6)
* Young Guns (February 6)
* ULTIMATE AVENGERS and ULTIMATE AVENGERS 2
* WEEDS (TV series)
* NATIONAL LAMPOON'S VAN WILDER
* THE DEAD ZONE (TV series)
* REQUIEM FOR A DREAM
* MONSTER'S BALL
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.