Blu-ray Disc Movies, Player Set for May

The Blu-ray Disc camp got their marching orders yesterday as announcements came about movie titles and Samsung’s Blu-ray Disc player gearing up to launch. The magic go date is May 23.

Among the movie studios making announcements, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and MGM Home Entertainment said they would debut eight titles on the launch date. These movies include 50 First Dates, The Fifth Element, Hitch, House of Flying Daggers, A Knight’s Tale, The Last Waltz (MGM), Resident Evil Apocalypse and XXX. They will be followed on June 13 by Kung Fu Hustle, Legends of the Fall, Robocop (MGM), Stealth, Species (MGM), SWAT and Terminator (MGM).

Lionsgate’s initial Blu-ray Disc launch titles on May 23 will include Crash, Lord of War, The Punisher, Saw and Terminator 2: Judgment Day. These will be followed in June/July by Reservoir Dogs, Total Recall, Stargate, Frank Herbert’s Dune and The Devil’s Rejects.

The first commercially available Blu-ray Disc player, meanwhile, will be Samsung’s BD-P1000. It will be followed shortly by BD players from Pioneer and Sony along with a BD compatible VAIO PC from Sony.

“We are primed to ensure that a variety of Blu-ray Disc content is available at retail to support the introduction of the first BD players from Samsung Electronics and Pioneer, as well as the first BD player and compatible VAIO computer from Sony,” said Benjamin S. Feingold, president, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, in a statement. “Sony Pictures further intends to provide additional titles to coincide with the launch of BD products from other manufacturers. We’re thrilled that the Blu-ray Disc era is about to begin.”