My Two Cents
Thursday, 05 January 2017 17:19

More 4K news from CES 2017, a look at new players, Fifth Element in 4K & new BD announcements

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All right, let’s have more on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray from CES 2017, plus a bit of regular Blu-ray announcement news too...

First up, we have reliable word that Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is listing Luc Besson’s The Fifth Element for release on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray format on 7/11. That makes a ton of sense, because Besson’s Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017) arrives in theatres on 7/21 (from STX Entertainment).

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has also just officially set Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk for 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray 3D Combo, Blu-ray Combo, and DVD release on 2/14. The 4K release will be presented in full 4K and 60 fps, with HDR and Dolby Atmos audio. It features an exclusive 4K Featurette with Ang Lee and Tim Squyres discussing the film’s groundbreaking frame rate technology. The Blu-ray versions will include delete scenes and 4 featurettes (Into Battle and Onto the Field: Stepping Inside Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, Recreating the Halftime Show, The Brotherhood of Combat, and Assembling a Cast). You can see the cover artwork to the left.  [Read on here…]

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In other release news (non-4K), Sony has also set the Sony Pictures Classics indie hit The Eagle Huntress for Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital release on 2/7. Extras include audio commentary with Otto Bell and the Capturing the Eagle Huntress featurette.

Olive Films has set the silent William S. Hart western Wagon Tracks (1919) for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 1/24. Also coming in January are Hooperman: Season 1 (1987) and Hooperman: Season 2 (1988) on DVD only and Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number! (1966), Sabotage (1939), and The Men’s Club (1986) on both Blu-ray and DVD.

Scream Factory has set a Tales from the Hood: Collector’s Edition for Blu-ray release on 4/18.

The Film Detective is releasing the 1970s kung fu/blaxploitation film The Black Dragon’s Revenge on Blu-ray and DVD on 1/31. The film has been restored from the original 35mm negative.

Universal will release Jonás Cuarón’s Desierto, starring Jeffrey Dean Morgan, on Blu-ray and DVD on 2/7.

And Paramount has just set Beavis and Butt-Head: The Complete Collection for DVD only release on 2/14 (SRP $46.99). It includes all four volumes of the TV series, the Beavis and Butt-Head Do America: Special Collector’s Edition, and “a wealth of bonus material including Taint of Greatness: The Journey of Beavis and Butt-Head Parts 1-3, the VMA appearances, a Thanksgiving Special with Kurt Loder, the 1994-1996 Butt-Bowls, MTV 20th Anniversary Special, the original, un-cut Frog Baseball, a 2011 Comic-Con panel featuring Mike Judge and moderator Johnny Knoxville, promos, montages, and much, much more.”

Also, file this in the unofficial/Rumor Mill category, but a variety retail sources are suggesting that Disney and Lucasfilm’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is coming to Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray, and DVD in April. Several online retailers have pre-order listed the title with a street date of 4/28, including EZY DVD and JB Hi-Fi. listed a date for a while too, but that’s now gone. In any case, I would bet April-ish is the right time frame. Watch for official announcements from Disney and Lucasfilm in the weeks ahead.

Meanwhile, back at CES, the UHDA (UHD Alliance) has announced the completion of performance specs for viewing UHD content on portable devices, and “anticipates announcing specification details, licensing commencement and logo introduction in the first quarter of 2017.”

Also, not only have we learned that Sony’s new Bravia line of OLED 4K HDR TVs will support Dolby Vision, Philips has announced that its new 4K TVs for 2017 will support Dolby Vision as well.

And this happened last month, but Cyberlink’s PowerDVD software player has now been certified by the Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) to play 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray media. So forthcoming PCs equipped with 4K drives should be able to play the discs. You can now purchase the software from their online store and the 4K capability will be unlocked in the weeks/months ahead.

Before we go for the afternoon, here’s a look at some of the new 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray players that have been announced at CES 2017 so far. Here’s Panasonic’s DMP-UB900, DMP-UB400, and DMP-UB300 (top to bottom)...

Panasonic DMP-UB900

Panasonic DMP-UB400

Panasonic DMP-UB300

Here’s a look at Sony’s UBP-X800...

Sony UBP-X800

Here’s Samsung’s UBD-M9500...

Samsung UBD-M9500

Here’s the LG UP970...

LG UP970

And last, here’s the recently released Oppo UDP-203...

Oppo UDP-203 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Player

Back tomorrow. Stay tuned...

- Bill Hunt (@BillHuntBits)


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