- Paramount is poised to drop its support of HD-DVD following Warner Brothers' recent backing of Sony's Blu-ray technology, in a move that could sound the death knell of HD-DVD and bring the home entertainment format war to a definitive end.
Paramount and DreamWorks Animation, which makes the Shrek films, came out in support of HD-DVD last summer, joining General Electric's Universal Studios as the main backers of the Toshiba format.
However, Paramount, which is owned by Viacom, is understood to have a clause in its contract with the HD-DVD camp that would allow it to switch sides in the event of Warner backing Blu-ray, according to people familiar with the situation.
Paramount is set to have a bumper 2008 with several likely blockbusters, including the latest instalment in the Indiana Jones franchise, slated for release.
Paramount joining the Blu-ray camp would leave HD-DVD likely to suffer the same fate as Sony's now obsolete Betamax video technology, which lost out to VHS in a similar format war in the 1980s.
Warner's decision last week to throw its weight behind Blu-ray saw it join Walt Disney, 20th Century Fox and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer as backers of the Sony format.
The Warner move gives Blu-ray about 70 per cent of Hollywood's output, although the format's...