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Lions Gate to Bow PSP Movies

7 Mar, 2005 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Calling it the “next generation” in digital media, Lions Gate Home Entertainment unveiled a slate of theatrical and catalog titles for Sony Corp.'s upcoming PlayStation Portable (PSP) handheld entertainment system.

It is the first studio, besides Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, to commit to the format.

Initial releases on the smaller 1.8GB 60mm UMD (Universal Media Disc) format include Saw, Punisher, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, Open Water, House of the Dead, Rambo: First Blood, Total Recall, Young Guns, Step Into Liquid, Universal Soldier, Stargate and National Lampoon's Van Wilder.

The highly anticipated PSP system — launched in December in Tokyo for about $250 and due shortly in the United States — is expected to meld video games, music, movies, communication and wireless networking onto a portable platform.

Lions Gate expects to retail the UMD releases at prices comparable to DVD, with typical bonus material and special features included, space permitting. Sony's UMD releases will include minimal extras.

“We will put as much material as we can up to the capacity of the disc,” said Ron Schwartz, EVP North America Home Video for Lions Gate. “If there is room to enhance the product offering we absolutely will continue to do that.”

Schwartz said the picture and sound quality coupled with the merged capabilities of games and music make the PSP an appealing device for the 18-to 34-year-old demographic rife with disposable income.

“We have always looked to be not only at the forefront [but in a] leadership position in terms of new [media] platforms, and we think [PSP] has that opportunity,” Schwartz said.

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