Japan: Studios Announce Limited Blu-Ray, HD DVD Titles

Despite some talk of a possible temporary slowdown in production of next-gen DVD players by both camps, Sony and about a dozen other studios announced the release of 75 movie titles on Blu-ray Disc in Japan, including global blockbuster "The Da Vinci Code," according to the Associated Press.

Over in the Toshiba HD DVD camp, about 40 titles will be offered in Japan soon, the AP said.

Blu-ray titles will not be available in Japan for a few more months, to better coincide with Sony's late fall ramp up of PlayStation 3, its anticipated game console upgrade that will come with a built-in Blu-ray drive which Sony (and more neutral industry observers) predict will give a major boost to the Blu-ray side.

Some individual studios already have announced several Blu-ray titles for North American and European release in coming weeks. Most studios had cut back their respective menu of titles (for both DVD formats) and attributed it mostly to confusion among those consumers (at least those who are aware of the Blu-ray vs. HD DVD standoff, to begin with).

HD DVD titles in the U.S. will reportedly reach about 140 by early fall. The number of Blu-ray titles in America is expected to be about the same.