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Warner, Paramount Announce 50GB Titles

10 Oct, 2006 By: Thomas K. Arnold

Two more studios Tuesday announced 50GB Blu-ray Disc releases in the wake of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's rush to market of the hit theatrical Click as the industry's first ultra-high-capacity next-generation optical disc.

Warner Home Video announced that its next wave of high-def disc titles, arriving in stores Oct. 31, will include 50GB editions of Unforgiven and The Searchers.

And at the Media-Tech conference Tuesday in Long Beach, Calif., Paramount Home Entertainment marketing VP Chris Saito said Oliver Stone's World Trade Center also will get the 50GB treatment, although he did not specify an exact release date.

Since Blu-ray's launch in June, studios have found that the standard 25GB disc isn't big enough to hold all the additional special features and interactive experiences format backers had been promising.

“We discovered that once you optimize the picture and the sound, on a lot of movies that just eats up most of the room,” 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment marketing EVP Peter Staddon said at the conference. “In order to give the full Blu-ray experience, you need the extra 25GB, particularly on any long movie.”

Fox has one 50GB title in the pipeline, Kingdom of Heaven, coming Nov. 14. Lionsgate also is preparing its first 50GB disc, The Descent, for December release.

In addition to Click, which came out Oct. 10, Sony has Black Hawk Down arriving in stores Nov. 14 and Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby coming Dec. 12.

Warner's Oct. 31 high-def disc slate also includes The Phantom of the Opera on Blu-ray Disc, V for Vendetta and Excalibur on HD DVD, and Under Siege on both formats.

Warner said all the bonus features on the standard DVD versions of these films will be included on the high-def editions.

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