Earlier today, I posted about the drive to release content from the film archives on high-definition DVD. However, most of my recent focus on HD has been on the development of high-definition content for broadcast television. A few days ago, I linked to a chart that outlined how much primetime content the six broadcast networks are offering in high-definition.
But, one should remember that the transition to hi-def. is not only taking place in content for the future, although it will be best exploited in content produced specifically for HD. There is also a drive to remaster content from the archive to make it high-definition friendly.
Enter the new editions of the original Star Trek series. The cult classic, starring William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy as the incomparable Capt. Kirk and Spock (Mister, not Doctor, as Steve so astutely pointed out), is going to receive dramatic alteration, with the 40-year-old content being re-released in syndication.
The new epsodes will feature new music and special effects, including the move to high-definition format.
The plan is to make all of the 79 episodes from the original series available in syndication on stations across the country. Initially, the episodes chosen to be remastered are listed as "fan favorites."
For everyone collecting television on DVD, will there soon be a new round of almost everything, digitally remastered? But what good would a digitally remastered Honeymooners or I Love Lucy be, aesthetically speaking? Maybe, with shows that rely fairly heavily on the visual, and especially with special effects, high-definition remastering seems to make sense.
The question is what would make viewers who already own a television series willing to purchase it again and in what shows it would be worth investing that much new capital.
It will be interesting to see if other television series are going to follow Star Trek in this remastering process--and particularly how soon this process begins to become more prevalent.