Paramount and DreamWorks Drop Blu-ray
In unexpected news today, Paramount and DramWorks Animation have announced that both studios will drop their support of the Blu-ray format in the next-generation DVD format war and will now exclusively publish content on HD-DVD. As such, major upcoming home releases of titles like Blades of Glory, Transformers, and Shrek the Third will be available in HD solely on HD-DVD. Paramount subsidiary MTV Films is also included in the deal.
Omitted from the Paramount / DreamWorks deal, however, are all films directed by Steven Spielberg, which will continue to be released on both formats. Though Spielberg apparently insists that his films be accessible to fans of either of the warring formats, chairman and CEO of Paramount Pictures Brad Grey is pretty stoked to formally ally the studio with the HD-DVD camp. "The combination of Paramount and DreamWorks Animation brings a critical mass of current box office hits to consumers with a line-up of live action and animated films that are perfect for HD DVD. Part of our vision is to aggressively extend our movies beyond the theater, and deliver the quality and features that appeal to our audience. I believe HD DVD is not only the affordable high quality choice for consumers, but also the smart choice for Paramount."
Jeffrey Katzenberg, Dream Works Animation CEO, also weighed in: "We decided to release "Shrek the Third" and other DreamWorks Animation titles exclusively on HD DVD because we believe it is the best format to bring high quality home entertainment to a key segment of our audience - families. We believe the combination of this year's low- priced HD DVD players and the commitment to release a significant number of hit titles in the fall makes HD DVD the best way to view movies at home."