Universal: HD DVD Plans in Flux

Posted Fri Feb 22, 2008 at 08:00 AM PST by Peter Bracke
Fletch, Charlie Wilson's War [Blu-ray Box Art]

With Universal having thrown its weight behind Blu-ray earlier this week, the studio says the fate of its remaining HD DVD releases is currently TBD.

Though the studio has yet to make any formal announcements, when asked to confirm recent retail reports that it was planning a March 18 HD DVD debut for the Oscar nominee 'Atonement,' a Universal rep told us that the studio's entire HD DVD slate is currently in flux -- leaving open the possibility that it may not issue any more titles in the format.

As for which titles might be affected by such a move, prior to Tuesday's announcement, Universal had only confirmed two upcoming HD DVD releases: the Chevy Chase comedy 'Fletch' (due March 11), and the Tom Hanks-Julia Roberts starrer, 'Charlie Wilson's War' (which had been planned for sometime in the April-May timeframe).

At press time, the majority of titles on the HD DVD release schedule were split between Warner and Paramount/DreamWorks. As we've previously reported, Warner recently reiterated their intention to continue supporting the format until the end of May, while Paramount has yet to set a timetable for its own move to Blu-ray (just this week, the studio issued fresh details for two upcoming HD DVD releases, 'Sweeney Todd' and 'There Will Be Blood.')

We'll keep you posted on any changes to the HD DVD release schedule as soon as official information comes to us.

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Discs mentioned in this article: (Click for specs and reviews)
Dirty Harry (Blu-ray)
Beetlejuice (Blu-ray)
Fletch (HD DVD)
Tags: Universal, Industry Forecasts (all tags)