Blu-ray has an unexpected new backer in the high-def format war, with Starz Home Entertainment announcing exclusive support of the format with its first release 'Masters of Horror.'
The news came today from the Sixth Annual Home Entertainment Summit, held in Century City, California, where Starz Home Entertainment President Bill Clark revealed at a press conference that the network would begin releasing its first Blu-ray-exclusive titles this fall.
For its maiden release, Starz will unleash the popular made-for-cable horror anthology 'Masters of Horror' in the fourth quarter of 2007. Exact pricing, supplemental details and street date have not yet been announced.
Other Starz catalog releases are set to follow 'Horror' in the coming months, although no other titles were announced at the Summit.
The news is even more noteworthy for Blu-ray as Starz controls the home video catalog of Anchor Bay Entertainment, one of the most popular suppliers of independent genre titles on standard-def DVD. Among the classics in the Anchor Bay library include 'Halloween,' 'The Evil Dead,' 'Re-Animator and the original 'Night of the Living Dead.' Should 'Masters of Horror' on Blu-ray score with consumers, it seems likely that at least some of these genre staples would follow.
Clark went on to say that the company has no current plans to release on rival next-gen format HD DVD.
'Masters of Horror' -- along with all future Starz Blu-ray releases -- are set to be distributed under the MGM Home Entertainment banner.
We'll certainly keep you posted as further details on 'Masters of Horror' and other Starz releases are officially announced. In the meantime, we've added a new listing for 'Masters of Horror' to the "Release Dates Pending" section of our Blu-ray Release Schedule. Watch this space!