Rejoice, muggles! Warner Home Video has issued specs and a December date for 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix' on Blu-ray and HD, as well as initial plans for a 'Years 1-5' limited edition box set.
One of the most eagerly-awaited franchises on high-def, Warner has finally ended over seventeen months of speculation by confirming a December 11 next-gen arrival date for the fifth and latest in the blockbuster series, 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,' day-and-date with the standard-def DVD release.
As the studio has done with several recent high-profile titles, however, the Blu-ray and the HD DVD editions will not be created equal.
Not unlike the recently-released '300' and 'Blood Diamond,' the HD DVD edition of 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix' will contain a trio of exclusive bonus features, including a "In-Movie Experience" video commentary featuring "the cast from Dumbledore's Army coming together to share memorable moments," the ability to "Pick Your Favorite Scenes" and assemble your favorite clips from the movie into a montage, and additional web-enabled content including downloads and other goodies to be announced.
Extras shared between the HD DVD, Blu-ray and two-disc standard-def DVD version include an A&E documentary, "Trailing Tonks" and "Fun and Games" featurettes, additional "Focus Points" making-of vignettes, and ten minutes of never-before-seen deleted scenes.
Warner has not yet released tech specs for the high-def releases, so it's unknown whether or not high-resolution audio will be supported. We'll keep you posted.
List price will be $39.98 for the HD DVD version, and $34.98 for the Blu-ray.
The studio has also announced that they will bring a 'Harry Potter Years 1-5: Limited Edition Giftset' to both high-def formats concurrent with 'Order of the Phoenix' on December 11 for a list price of $149.98. However, full details on what will be included in the set -- as well as whether the first four installments in the series will be made available as separate stand-alone releases -- is set to be revealed shortly in a separate announcement.
You'll find disc details for 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix' linked from our Blu-ray Release Schedule and HD DVD Release Schedule, where the title is indexed under December 11. Stay tuned for final specs, as well as additional details on 'Years 1-5,' to be come soon.
We've also set up dedicated threads for Warner's latest in our Forums area -- click the following links to discuss the 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix' Blu-ray release and the 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix' HD DVD release.