Japan will soon become the world's second major market to see the launch of Blu-ray Disc movies.
A handful of film and video content studios, including Sony Pictures, Paramount, Warner Bros and Buena Vista, will begin selling titles in Japan in November, they said at a joint news conference in Tokyo today.
Prototype Blu-ray Disc players from Sony, Panasonic, Pioneer and Hitachi were also on show at the event, but those companies didn't announce details, launch dates or prices for the machines. Previously, Sony said it will sell its PlayStation 3 games console in Japan from 11 November. The machine features a Blu-ray Disc drive suitable for playback of Blu-ray Disc movies.
The first titles are expected to go on sale a few days before the PlayStation 3 launch in early November.
Warner Bros will put four titles on sale on 3 November, including Harrison Ford's 'Firewall' and Stanley Kubrick's 'Full Metal Jacket'. The discs will cost ¥3,980 (about £18), although Warner said it will charge a higher price – ¥4,980(£22.50) – for titles that go on sale simultaneously with their DVD release.
In addition to movies, several music-related discs will also hit store shelves. Sony will begin selling six titles on 22 November priced between ¥5,040 and ¥6,615 (£23 to £30), it said. A further five titles from the company will go on sale on 24 January.