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Paramount to Stagger Release of Blu-ray, DVD Titles

Paramount Home Entertainment will join a handful of other studios in attempting to boost the attraction of new media by releasing its titles on Blu-ray for sales and rental, prior to shipping its standard DVD versions to retailers. A similar strategy has been plagued in the past by rollouts that appeared to have been too complicated for many retailers to comprehend—instead leading to widespread simultaneous releases of both Blu-ray and DVD packaged content.

Paramount wants to stagger the release of it titles in both formats by as much as a month. For example, "Dance Flick," a Paramount title that came and went in theaters with very little notice (barely gleaning $25 million in the U.S.), will be released on Blu-ray now for both rental and sales—while the standard DVD version is not set to release until Sept. 8.

The Blu-ray version of the movie for sale will also contain added content that will be missing from the standard DVD and rental versions, notably bloopers and deleted scenes. (Its Blu-ray rental version, as well as the DVD's, will only hold the movie itself.)

Walt Disney Studios, which attempted to stagger some of its titles between Blu-ray and standard DVD in the past year with little success because of confusion at the store level, currently still plans an early October release of the animated 1939 classic "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" on Blu-ray—nearly two months prior to release of its newly produced standard DVD version on Nov. 24, two days before Thanksgiving.