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Sony PSP Movie Bows at Same Time as DVD

17 Feb, 2005 By: Jessica Wolf

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's House of Flying Daggers will fly to PlayStation Portable (PSP) and DVD on the same date.

The Academy Award-nominated film, due April 19, is the first title from the supplier to street simultaneously on DVD and Universal Media Disc (UMD). The new mini-disc technology is for exclusive use with PSP, Sony's much-anticipated entry into the handheld entertainment market. PSP hits stores March 24.

House of Flying Daggers, priced at $28.95 on UMD, is among SPHE's first wave of UMD catalog titles streeting April 19. That wave includes XXX, Hellboy, Resident Evil 2 and Once Upon a Time in Mexico, priced at $19.95 each.

More releases, both catalog titles and new movies, will follow monthly.

Going forward, Sony's blockbuster theatrical hits, family titles and any films with strong appeal in the PSP's 18- to 24-year-old market will street simultaneously on DVD and UMD, said SPHE president Ben Feingold.

Current theatrical releases for the studio, such as The Boogeyman and Are We There Yet?, also will arrive on UMD the same day they street on DVD, he said.

SPHE is focused on using the 1.8 GB of digital data space on the 60mm UMD discs to create the best possible picture quality, so UMD extras will likely be limited to trailers, Feingold said.

“The PSP is a much more sophisticated device [than other handheld gaming systems like Nintendo's GameBoy] with fantastic playback capability,” he said. “Visually, the picture quality is stunning.”

These new discs launching with PSP mark an exciting time for the video industry, Feingold said.

“This is going to be the good-news story of the year,” he said.

The first million PSP units shipped in North America will already come packaged with Spider-Man 2 UMD discs.

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