Paramount Backs Blu-Ray DVD format

In the latest twist of a heated battle over next-generation DVD technology, Paramount Home Entertainment said it would release high-definition movies in the Blu-ray format backed by a group led by Sony Corp.

Paramount, a film studio owned by Viacom Inc., had previously said it would release titles in a competing DVD format called HD DVD that is endorsed by a consortium of electronics makers including Toshiba Corp.

In a statement released late Sunday in the United States, Paramount threw its weight strongly behind the Blu-ray camp but did not mention HD DVD. That means Paramount could still sell movies in both standards.

"After more detailed assessment and new data on cost, manufacturability and copy protection solutions, we have now made the decision to move ahead with the Blu-ray format," Thomas Lesinski, president of Paramount Pictures, said in the release.

Lesinski said the fact that Sony's next-generation PlayStation 3 game console would come equipped with a Blu-ray DVD player was a key factor behind its support. PlayStation 3 is due to be launched next spring, reports Reuters.

According to Toshiba, Blu-ray is way behind HD DVD and volume production of disks will show that.

Toshiba "is convinced" that Hollywood studios will opt for commercialisation in the HD DVD format.

And as for what you and I want, well, we're "consumers", a little like cattle or sheep being put out to pasture and fattened up either for the streams of milk or meat we can provide, or to be sheared at will by all the parties involved, informs the Inquirer.


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