It looks like 2007 may be the year we start seeing Star Trek on High Definition media. Both The Hollywood Reporter and Home Media Retailing quote CBS Home Entertainment head Ken Ross as saying that Star Trek: The Original Series is going to be released on DVD/HD-DVD Combo format at the end of 2007. "The reason we chose to do that is to give us the ability to make high-definition transfers of the show available to people who don’t yet have high-definition players," Ross says in the interview. However the same piece also notes that while a Blu-ray Disc release hasn’t yet been scheduled, CBS will support both formats like Paramount does. So, to cut through all the hype, this likely means that while the HD-DVD camp can probably accurately say that The Original Series will be an HD-DVD exclusive in 2007, the release almost certainly won’t happen until the very end of the year (simply due to the fact that it’s going to take that long to finish at least a season’s worth of remastered episodes) and a Blu-ray Disc release probably won’t be far behind. There is also movement on the movie side as well. Exepct to see at least one of the Trek films on HD-DVD by the end of the year, with Blu-ray likely to follow.
There are still many questions related to Trek’s future on DVD, HD-DVD and Blu Ray. Expect a more detailed report here on TrekMovie.com in the near future.
UPDATE From Bill at the Bits:
We’ve got a bit of follow-up on yesterday’s Star Trek news for you this morning. We’re still waiting to hear back from CBS Paramount as far as The Original Series (and other Trek TV properties), but Paramount Home Entertainment’s Vice President of Publicity, Brenda Ciccone, told me last night in no uncertain terms that when the Star Trek feature films (which Paramount specifically controls) are released on disc in high-def, they will each be released on both HD-DVD and Blu-ray Disc, in keeping with Paramount’s stated commitment to support both formats. The studio is working to evaluate its catalog titles for high-def release now. So you Trekkers on both sides of the HD format war can all live long and prosper… on that score at least.
This article is an extended version of an article at the Digital Bits. BIll Hunt is Editor of the Bits and is providing this and future updates to TrekMovie.com readers courtesey of The Digital Bits
Thanks to all the TrekMovie.com readers that sent links to various articles about this. Bill and I were hoping that more news came out today to provide more details. I want to thank Bill for providing this article and look forward to more updates for Trek fans from Bill
Cool news and great to see Bill Hunt show up here at trekmovie!
great to see a little more coming out, and really cool to have Bill come on over :)
If they do put this on DVD then I hope it also have the same special feature as well.
This “blog” on HDTV is interesting; as Scotty said, “I’ll let you know!.”
But CBS Digital should re-do Star Trek V.
Yes, nice news. Of course, one of the next big questions will be what aspect ratio we’re going to see on HD media.
Star Trek V — quick while Shatner’s still alive.
That’d be a good one to get out. You all know you want to see it.
I love The Digital Bits.
i know there are a million questions…hopefully we will have more answers soon. If anyone can get to the bottom of it, Bill can
Oh I rather doubt the commercial release will be the funky 16:9/4:3 switch off we’ve seen in the Xbox downloads. As I recall CBS-D didn’t know it was being distributed like that.
I think Paramount has enough smarts to know that TOS Remastered should be left in OAR. There are quite a few 4:3 ‘catalog’ HD DVD movies around now, Casablanca is the shining example of this.
How could it be a whole season? I looked at the list of episodes to are against the first season episodes… the list of eps for the first batch ends in sept with the last few listed being repeats. Even if all the eps after sept thru the end of the year were season one i’m not sure they could get them all in? Plus if they have a break as they did before and if they intend to go back and redo the previous eps how would they get this produced and out in time?
Guess those are just some of the questions you mentioned. Look forward to seeing more on this.
Am I the only one a tad wary of this happening so soon?
I wanted CBS Digital to have plenty of time to finish the run of TOS-R, and then be able to go back and tweak the things they weren’t able to the first time around. (Most notably, using the newer 1701 model in those first episodes they did.)
I’m afraid that if CBS/Paramount is going to rush out the first season, it’s not going to give CBS Digital that major element they need to do the job right: time.
YES! I was worried they’d only have HD-DVD and Blue Ray. I ain’t shellin’ out any money for that crap ’till the price comes down.
Now I’m just hoping for true surround sound. The DVD’s I have say Dolby surround sound, but the only part I noticed was the opening title sequence. I wan’t to feel like I’m really on the bridge :)
Is it TOS or TOS-R that will be released?
Bill Hunt is everywhere I go! Awesome ;)
It wasn’t recorded in true surround sound… Of course, that doesn’t exactly preclude it from being remixed, but I believe that has already happened with the DVDs (if I’m remembering correctly, ironically from an article at Digital Bits).
Oh, and this is awesome. I love HD DVD! I just wish it’d win over Blu-Ray, but I do think Blu-Ray will come out the victor.
Yeah, it wasn’t remixed very well. My rear speakers get 2 seconds of use out of the last dvd’s released. Digitally reworking sound effects to be in surround sound can be done. I know THX didn’t exist when the first Star Wars movie came out… not that I’m looking for something that extensive.
Just wanna check… nowhere in the US currently are the HD versions of the remastered versions being shown on TV, yes? Only the SD versions. If anyone is seeing them on the HD version of their channel they are simply watching the SD version upconverted, yes..? Thanks. I’m having a debate about this on a forum.
According to wikipedia there are also plans to release The Ultimate Star Trek Movie Collection and Star Trek: Enterprise on HD DVD and possibly the other star trek series.
#18, you are correct. Only the SD version is being supplied to syndicators at this time.
Fine, what’s the rush? I know, money. But like the fans say, take your time and do it right. That means tweaking many details in the audio & video departments; everything should be done with as much care and time to allow for a great release of the show.
The “other” Star Trek series were not edited on film and you can’t create HD from an SD video tape. Nor were their effects done in HD. They won’t be in HD for a long time.
I guess the episodes will be sold in the remastered release order where continuity will be jumping around all over 3 seasons. I wish they’d wait till ’09 to do it right.
I hope they’re doing some kind of VFX rework for at least the first 5 Trek films. Or hell, why not all 10. Even though there is a sparkling HD transfer of Nemesis. The other films will show horrible compositing lines at 1920X1080. But, given CBS’ crappy approach to everything, I’m sure we’ll see high def versions of the same old grainy, 80’s FX, flickering Trek we’ve come to know and love.
I wish I had pull in the industry, like my own post house. I would restore those films and shows in a heart beat.
DAMN LIFE, WHY ARE THOU SO CRUEL?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!??
As far as Blu-Ray vs. HD-DVD goes,Ii think BR has more data throughput. That’s about it. It ultimately leads to better image quality …IF THE DVD IS MASTERED RIGHT!! That is what people do not seem to understand.
Steps to restoring Trek, TV and Movies. CBS, PLEASE READ DAMMIT!:
Go back to the CAMERA NEGATIVE if applicable. Most cases it DOES exist.
Scan in at 4096X3112 (4K),
Run dust, scratch, spot, PIXEL FILLING and, color correcting algorithms on the material
review the material !
After viewing the cleaned image, re-composite using Combustion and pre- made HD models, mattes, scenes or whatever….in 4K, do not compress during this step or any of the above listed procedures.
Compress from the tweaked 4K work print using the maximum data retention that BR and HD will allow. Blu-Ray will come out slightly ahead but it probably won’t be noticeable.
Hire a new artist for the DVD covers. The other ones were abysmal at best.
Well folks, there you have it; the definitive way to restore trek. All of the above procedures can be performed by DTS digital images for the ultimate in picture and sound. Then, and only then, will Trek be made “future proof.” Or until HD 2.0 comes around.
Somebody answer this, Why is the cheap and easy way out so popular?
Great that they’re taking advantage of new technology! However, I certainly hope they do release it on standard DVD as well. I just want to see the remastered episodes some day.
I really wish they would wait before putting STAR TREK REMASTERED out on DVD. I would rather buy them season by season, and see some of the effects that where redone (like Balance of Terror) have the new CGI model put in before they are released.
As for ST V… yes, they definitly need to go back and fix it up. Also, whoever fixes it up needs to look at the movie SOLARIS! The blue planet shown below is exactly how the God Planet should look like.
Please make the original unmastered version available, it has brighter colors than TOSR which appears to have been darkened and washed out for stylistic reasons. Maybe this was done to mske TOS look modern or maybe its some technical thing I don’t get. If it was stylistic it seems myopic and unnecessary; the show lasted forty years because of its quality, which included the organic visuals. Before somebody writes up an optics lesson or picks up a phaser, I saw the early TOSR shows where shadows on faces became black. Also., keep in mind for many people who want this purely for CGI, the effects will date quickly. I suspect many will want TOSR2 if they like what is is done for the movie and won’t get the first one. I won’t get it because I want to see the model and the original stuff, but for those who want it– I got no problem. My taste ain’t everybody’s, thank goodness. It’d be a dull world.
That’s great that they’re releasing it in the dual format, because I haven’t (and likely won’t for some time) yet invested in the next-generation VD format yet. My Dad has the original sets (which I still enjoy, 60s effects and all), but I’ve been enjoying the remastered, so that’s what I’ll get! :)
Kudos once more to CBS-D for its great work and Paramount for the smart business move! :)
I wish people would realize that CBS doesn’t have anything to do with the Trek movies…they deal with the T.V. shows. Paramount is in charge of the movies, so if anyone were to restore them…it would be Paramount.
#12. ety3 – “Am I the only one a tad wary of this happening so soon?”
No, You are Not. I agree with you. CBS Digital should not be pressed so soon. They’re doing great work right now. Let them continue to refine their craft. I’m willing to wait to see this project done correctly.
Okay, fine. Paramount follow the steps for the movies. CBS, follow the steps for TNG, DS9, and VOY. Enterprise is already mastered in pristine HD format.
Does anyone have in their possession, a clip of true high def footage? 1920X1080 24P or some 4K footage? I do not have any on my home workstation.
#24 Sean 4000
To answer your rhetorical question, they do it the cheap and easy way because it is both cheap and easy!
#28 New Horizon
Actually, Star Trek is licensed through CBS Consumer Products. However, DVDs are run through Paramount Home Entertainment last time I checked. Amidst this corporate conglomerate haze, Star Trek exists. So, at some point CBS and Paramount (both Viacom companies) get their hands on Star Trek as it makes its way to video release. Take that confusion for what its worth, but the bottom line is CBS is in the mix.
And I forgot my original purpose of posting…
WELCOME BILL HUNT!!! Thanks for joining the party. I’ve been reading your two cents for a long time and its very cool to have you partake in trekmovie.com. Anthony, hats off to you for scoring Mr. Hunt. He may be from North Dakota, but Bill is the most dangerous authority of digital entertainment in the known universe. Okey, carry on…
I really do hope someone nails down whether the cleaned-up but *NOT* CGI-ed versions of the episodes will be included on the HD-DVD and Blu-ray releases.
While I’ve become a (belated) fan of the work CBS Digital is doing, it would be sad for standard-definition DVD to be the end of the line for the original, unmodified version of Star Trek.
HD-DVD, Blu-ray = $$$. Old tv shows in HD? They are only as good as their source unless you want to redo everything and then whats the point?
This crap with re-re-re leasing Trek shows and movies is hurting Treks future. I love Trek like alot of you but this is too much! Paramount needs to just stop for awile and not suck off Trek until it’s not worthwile anymore……
Darth “My teet hurts” Ballz
#24 — you make it sound like it is easy. That assumes the filmed elements still exist, are in good condition, and most importantly that Paramount can and will hire a huge team of graphics pros to recreate every FX shot in CG for compositing with the scans of the fillmed elements. Sorry, but that\’s an incredible undertaking. Each series has 7 seasons worth of episodes!
#29 — I totally agree with you all, I want TOS remastered on optical disc done right, not done fast. I\’m an eye candy whore and can\’t wait to see 1080p versions, but I don\’t want the old CG Enterprise left in because of a rush job on DVD releases, etc.
#32 — where would we have that from? CBS-D obviously does somewhere probably at 1080p or 2k, I bet they didn\’t spring for 4k transfers, the age/quality of the film might not make 4k worthwhile anyway, not sure how it all has held up. The shots from Friday\’s Child sure seem to have held up poorly.
Matt, let me ask you this. How can they do it any other way? A video transfer can not be made into HD. Not even with the best pixel manipulation available. No one has answered that question and if it is true and film is not in existence then TNG and the rest are damned to SD forever.
Old film can be chemically restored, re emulsified and then, digitally cleaned. I’ll wait to comment on “Friday’s Child” until after I see it.
The beauty is that this process is almost completely automated. The original film elements are un-composited. So, in theory, a program could make all necessary cleans and punch out the blue/ green elements in one swoop. Star fields are a piece of cake to create. If memory serves me right, the models were FILMED meaning they could be given an HD transfer and touched with computers. That decision is completely up to CBS/ Paramount.
TOS and ENT are, for all purposes, finished and can be released on HD/ BR in the near future.
“Matt, let me ask you this. How can they do it any other way? A video transfer can not be made into HD. ”
uhh no shit? I don’t think I ever said it couldn’t be done, my point was the massive undertaking it would take to redo TNG, DS9, and VOY for HD. Paramount won’t do it. Yes AFAIK everything was filmed aside from the final SFX which was done on tape. But think of all the FX shots that need to be redone… every phaser shot, every control panel that isn’t static, etc.
I am with you both here. It’s far too rushed for them to be releasing them to DVD just yet. They need to be given more time to go back and give the Job its final polish so to speak. For me it’s disappointing to think they are rushing this whole project. It deserves to be given more time and money to make it the best it can be. Now we will have to wait another x amount of years before they realise they missed an opportunely and go back and add to some of the sound stages etc… It’s a real shame
I would also like to add here that http://www.thedigitalbits.com is a tremendous site for anyone with an interest in Movies and DVDs, and is one of my favourite informative sites.
.. so I guess this DVD/HD combo he speaks of will have your standard def and high def on one disc-or 2 discs in one package? Guess I’m a littlle confused. If these remastered episodes are released on conventional DVD I’m there…but I won’t be buying them exclusively on HD or Blue ray. So far, to my eyes, the current DVD’s, upconverted to 720p resolution look everybit as good as the 1080 HD movies I see at Best Buy. I’m sure I could make out more detail if I got right up on the screen, but from 10 feet away the difference is negligable and not worth a big money upgrade.
If CBS/Paramount is going to release TOS-R on DVD/HD/BR I hope they add extras. Not just this is the way we restored it yadah yadah fluff.
They need to add the original NBC 1966-69 one minute promos and other various commercials they created promoting the show in its original prime-time run. A real seller would also be include the original three seasons of classic bloopers. Yes yes I know they were rescued from the cutting room floor with scratches, edits, film bumps, etc but the 16mm master in in their vaults…trust me.
Does anyone have a contact at Paramount home video department.
I’d love to put my two cents in.
I love this.
This initiative will never be taken and we’re stuck with grainy, poorly transfered Trek all because of people like Matt Wright.
For heaven’s sake, roll up your sleeves and get the F&&&&&G job done !
Let me clarify my question, Why can’t people see that the cheap and easy path leads to crappy results? Maybe not so much in TOS-R but life in general. There, it’s clarified and non-rhetorical. It was 2 AM when i wrote it the first time? lol.
Never ending pessimism is our number one enemy concerning future Trek projects.
Will everyone please download the high def version of the Enterprise 2.0 and see how clear a properly mastered HD movie can look. Keep in mind it is a CG still but it shows the proper dimensions and clarity a negative can achieve if mastered correctly.
I don’t think there are many TOS outakes left in the Paramount vaults. Where do you think Lincoln Enterprises got all those “original film frames” they sold in the 70s and 80s? Same with the original bloopers. Someone absconded with those decades ago.
re: ST:tNG etc. on HD. Yes they were recorded on film but all the post production was done on video. TOS was edited on film. Complete episodes on film exist for TOS. If the film elements for TNG+ exist they are thousands of unedited clips.
To make TNG in HD you basically have to remake everything in the show except the original cinematography. I can’t see that being done.
Captain Pike, i will not believe that 40 year old negatives outlasted 20 year old negatives. The original film elements have to exist.
If they exist, they should be cataloged already from the initial SD scanning. So, all we would have to to is rescan in HD and let the automated tools do their work.
The biggest hurdle is already completed….. We have an HD Enterprise NCC-1701-D ! Remember “These Are the Voyages?”
Can you believe that TNG is 20 years old?
I too am very interested, and concerned, in how this HD-DVD release is going to affect CBS Digital’s plans to go back and redo their earlier episodes.
Have any of the hands-on people involved been asked or otherwise given their opinion about this?
CBS/Paramount will double-dip, that’s a guarantee.
There is a very small market of high-def disc owners out there right now. My brother has the PS3 and he has yet to get another BR disc to add to his complimentary copy of Talladega Nights. He’s got the right setup, but he’s not a fan of what’s been released yet. There are so few titles out there as of yet, that old standbys like TOS will be pushed out to market immediately, with barebones features, and then, in a couple of years, when the market is established for high-def players, the studios will start putting out more meaningful releases, and TOS will get ANOTHER release, this time with all the bells and whistles.
Listen, Bill Hunt says this all the time and it bears repeating: DVD (standard def) is not going anywhere! I just watched Revenge of the Sith on my brother’s 56-inch Samsung 1080p DLP projection set, the movie looks amazing. Even at 480p, the film is stunning in quality. We were saying to eachother “If it looks this good at 480p, what the heck are we gonna do at 1080p when it comes out?” The numbers suggest there is no comparison between standard def and high def, but aside from pixels, the color, brightness and strength of the picture quality are all there in a properly authored standard def DVD. The point is, have patience. You’re missing out on less than you realize. I’ve been convinced by the experience to not make the high-def disc plunge for quite a while. The format war is stupid and wasteful, but luckily consumers are not suffering a major loss because good ‘ol fashioned DVDs are still magnificent.