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Thursday, May 04, 2006
Blu-ray Discs Launch Delayed Until End of June


While HD DVD titles trickle into stores, the arrival of the first titles in the rival Blu-ray Disc format has been pushed back by a month until June 20, to coincide with the first commercially available Blu-ray players.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment president Benjamin Feingold said his studio's first batch of Blu-ray releases will be ready May 23, as planned.

"But the majority of our retail base and hardware partners have requested that we reconsider this date to better coincide with the first commercially available Blu-ray-compatible hardware," Feingold said.

The decision to hold off shipping Blu-ray titles to retailers comes several weeks after Samsung announced its first Blu-ray player wouldn't arrive in stores until June 25, a month behind schedule.

Feingold said the first eight Blu-ray Disc titles from Sony won't ship until then "in an effort to ensure a more coordinated launch."

The first Blu-ray Disc titles from Warner Home Video are expected to arrive in stores around the same time, although no firm dates or titles have been announced.

The Sony Blu-ray Disc titles that are now slated to arrive in stores June 20 are "Underworld Evolution" (arriving the same day as the DVD), "50 First Dates," "The Fifth Element," "Hitch," "House of Flying Daggers," "A Knight's Tale," "The Last Waltz," "Resident Evil Apocalypse" and "XXX."


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