In a surprise to all attendees, Disney / Pixar chief John Lasseter took the
stage at the Sony keynote
address this morning. Introduced by Sony boss Sir Howard Stringer, Mr.
Lasseter spoke at length
about the superiority of the Blu-ray format. Lasseter believes that Blu-ray
has given filmmakers
like himself a new set of tools to create additional content beyond the scope
of the film itself.
Scenes and special features from Wall-E and Sleeping Beauty were shown to
the crowd as Mr.
Lasseter voiced obvious excitement at the limitless possibilities that bonus
view and BD Live
functionality can offer. The crowd was also shown a special sneak preview of
Pixar's next feature,
UP!, which is due to hit theaters this summer. In a nice aside, Mr. Stringer
rejoined Mr. Lasseter on
stage and personally thanked the team at Disney and Pixar for their steadfast
support of Blu-ray.
Without their unrelenting support and passion for the format, Mr. Stringer
believes that Blu-ray
may have had a hard time winning the format war.
Disney is also going to be the one who puts DVD (as a standalone sale) in the ground. They really have been the most forward thinking - and the committing to a DVD with the BD on the platinum releases will hopefully spur other companies to do the same - at least on kids demographic films.
Nice to see this! Disney and Sony are competitors as Hollywood studios, but allies on the Blu-ray front.
I agree with others here that Disney was one of the strongest forces for Blu-ray in the HD disc wars. Bob Chapek (president of Disney Home Entertainment) is also an outspoken Blu-ray supporter. And all of this is not just lipservice. Disney's Blu-ray releases usually set the bar for everyone else in quality and features.
Really looking forward to some more great Disney/Pixar stuff this year!
I don't understand why some people still insists on this "Blu-ray was forced upon us by Sony, etc". HD DVD have a 30 MB capacity. Blu-ray has 50 MB. Right? What comes next is program development and it's not like an old VCR where you can't get almost weekly firmware updates.
Sony made a big mistake in the Betamax/VHS War. Thankfully, Sony learned it's lesson and the best format actually won this time.
I don't know how much Sony spent to win the war... but I know Toshiba paid US$ 150 million to Paramount. And Steven Spielberg and even Michael Bay couldn't stop bitching about their movies not being avaiable on blu-ray.
Scene of UP! on WALL-E is so vivid too, but it doesn't give any details as to what it is about, other than a guy sitting on a chair on his porch being carried away by balloons attached to his house. Very awesome looking, but I'm not sure what it is saying other than UP!
I concur with his assessment though, this Blu-ray BD Live does seem boundless with possibilities. I wonder when the adult film industry will latch on to it?!
First of all Sony has forced nothing on anyone in my book and BD-Live? I have already used it and I love it and I cant wait to see what more it has to offer. Its nice to see Walt Disney and Sony working together because the future of Blu is limitless and its time for other non believers to jump aboard or get swept up by the new wave of entertainment.
HD-DVD may have lost, but maybe we would be better off if it hadn't lost so quickly. Prices for
movies are still too high and the players continue to need frequent updates to play movies. Maybe if
the HD standard had survived a little longer, Blu-Ray would have been forced to standardize on a
profile sooner, and the Movies might come down in price. $30 - $40 US. per movie is still fairly steep
for a lot of people. Blu-Ray won't see much more market share until the movies get cheaper.
These types of comments from industry execs are pure marketing. Please don't get me wrong; I would love to see blu-ray fly. However, as we have seen in the US auto industry, marketing hype does not always sell the product. IMHO, the companies that are supporting blu-ray in the US should also be listening to the voices of the market that want stand-alone recorders in the US. The adoption rate would go up. Right now, I don't think that blu-ray can afford to compete without all the market segments that it can possibly attract. For a portion of the market, it is much easier to download a movie than get a hard-copy. IMHO, downloading poses serious competition to BR.
In the face of this statement Mr. Lasseter, it is interesting to note that there is another story in the news that indicates that marketing is failing. The Wall Street Journal is running an article that more people are choosing to buy converter boxes for the US shift to DTV than are choosing to buy new TVs. In this case, marketing has also failed to convince people that they need a new TV.
I think that if one did a study on what is more successful, pushing stuff on people that they don't want vs giving them what they want, I think that the easy winner would be giving people what they want.
So, IMHO, the marketers can keep pushing blu-ray till the cows come home, but the better approach would be to appeal to all market segments in the US. After all, since stand-alone blu-ray recorders are so common in Japan, and being introduced in Australia, it would not take all that much to adapt them to the US market.
@bd4life, adult blu-ray xxx films are already here. they're not waiting until the media becomes
cheaper. that doesn't matter to them, as their prices never go down. at least not for the high
end stuff. for the cheap $20 hooker type quickie they'll always be around. but then you get
what you pay for. usually a case of clap.