Universal Pictures forced to switch to Blu-ray

Universal Pictures, one of the few studios still backing the HD DVD format, says it will follow the rest of the market and switch to Blu-ray.

Universal Pictures forced to switch to Blu-ray

The news comes after Toshiba announced it would be backing down in the format war between HD DVD and Blu-ray, stopping shipments of HD DVD players next month.

Officials from other HD DVD backers, like Paramount Pictures and DreamWorks Animation, were unavailable for immediate comment.

“The path for widespread adoption of the next-generation platform has finally become clear,” says Craig Kornblau, president Universal Studios Home Entertainment and Universal Pictures Digital Platforms, in a statement.

“The emergence of a single, high-definition format is cause for consumers, as well as the entire entertainment industry, to celebrate. While Universal values the close partnership it has shared with Toshiba, it is time to turn our focus to releasing new and catalog titles on Blu-ray,” he says.

Toshiba finally threw in the towel on Tuesday after losing support of key studios and retailers to the Blu-ray technology backed by Sony.

Both sides had aimed to set the standard for the next generation of optical HD content, but the fight had only confused shoppers.

A key turning point in the war came last month when Warner Bros, which had backed both formats, decided to support Blu-ray exclusively.

Universal Pictures had no further comment.

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