Many moons ago, Star Trek: The Original Series was remastered and released on Blu-ray Disc to mixed reviews, although the only debate on my end when I reviewed Season One was whether to give it a 9.5 or 10. In 2012, CBS Home Entertainment will start releasing remastered versions of Star Trek: The Next Generation on Blu-ray Disc, and I’ve got to admit, I can’t wait.
Things kick off on January 31, when Star Trek: The Next Generation – The Next Level ships to retail as a sort of “teaser” of things to come. The complete first season of Star Trek: TNG will ship later in 2012. When all is said and done, all 178 episodes from seven seasons will be transferred to true 1080p HD video and release on Blu-ray Disc.
Once remastered, the HD versions will also eventually run on TV and digital-distribution platforms in the United States and abroad.
While the first full season won’t be available until later in 2012, CBS Home Entertainment in January will release the single-disc The Next Level on Blu-ray, giving fans a taste of the series in HD. The disc will include the feature-length pilot “Encounter at Farpoint,” as well as two more fan favorite episodes, The Inner Light (from Season 5) and Sins of the Father (from Season 3). The single disc will be available for a suggested retail price of $21.99.
According to CBS, “[t]ransferring Star Trek: The Next Generation to high-definition presented numerous challenges. The series was originally shot on film and then transferred to videotape, which was used to edit episodes together. In order to create true HD masters, CBS is going back to the original uncut film negative — all 25,000 plus film reels of it — and cutting the episodes together exactly the way they originally aired. The visual effects were all shot on film and will be painstakingly recompositioned, not upconverted from videotape. The newly cut film will then be transferred to true high-definition with 7.1 DTS Master Audio. Denise and Mike Okuda are consulting on the project.”
Again, I personally can’t wait for this entire series to hit on Blu-ray Disc, and the 25th anniversary of the series’ debut makes perfect sense to launch Season One.