'Harry Potter,' 'Ocean's Eleven' Highlight Upcoming Warner HD DVD, Blu-ray Release Plans

Posted Mon Jun 18, 2007 at 04:59 AM PDT by
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Warner Home Video seems to have an impressive roster of top catalog releases planned for high-def this fall, with the studio reportedly prepping next-gen versions of its blockbuster 'Harry Potter' and 'Ocean's Eleven' series for Blu-ray and HD DVD.

At least, that's according to a new article over at Video Business focusing on the diverse high-def catalog plans of the major studios. The story offers the first news of several previously-unannounced major titles set to hit the docket for high-def, as both Blu-ray and HD DVD continue to seek mainstream consumer acceptance.

Among the major titles that Video Business says are hit to next-gen by the end of the year are two blockbuster franchises from Warner. The studio is reported to be planning a roll-out of at least some (if not all five) of the 'Harry Potter' series, as well as all three 'Ocean's Eleven' flicks.

Look for the 'Potter' titles to be released on high-def by the end of 2007, timed to the home video bow of next month's theatrical premiere 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.'

Also on tap are 'Ocean's Eleven' and 'Ocean's Twelve,' which should arrive with the late fall video debut of the 'Ocean's Thirteen.' (The latest -- and supposedly -- last in Steven Soderbergh's star-studded Vegas caper series opened at No. 1 at the domestic box office last weekend.)

In addition, Warner Home Video plans to bow some of the first made-for-DVD titles on either high-def format. Due for release in early 2008 are the horror movies 'The Rest Stop' and 'Sublime,' which will come from the studio's Raw Feed label.

Both the 'Potter' and 'Oceans' franchises have long been anticipated on Blu-ray and HD DVD. Warner has trumpeted both in many of its early promotional materials as "Coming Soon," and even went so far as to briefly list the fourth in the 'Potter' series, 'Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire' on its media website last fall, only to subsequently pull the title with no explanation.

According to Warner, the studio was waiting to releasing such A-list catalog product on both Blu-ray and HD DVD until high-def made further inroads into the mass consumer consciousness.

"It won’t be [just]early adopters in the fourth quarter," Steve Nickerson, Warner Warner senior VP of market management, told Video Business, "but at a point of the early majority, so as you put out product, you need to anticipate the upcoming demographic.”

In anticipation of official announcements from Warner for the 'Harry Potter' and 'Ocean's Eleven' series, as well as its Raw Feed titles, we've added listings for all to the "release dates pending" sections of our Blu-ray Release Schedule and HD DVD Release Schedule. Stay tuned!

Tags: Warner, Disc Announcements (all tags)