Following successful remastered releases of the original Star Trek series to the high def format, and a January preview disc containing select episodes, EW.com reports that the first season of Star Trek: The Next Generation will finally hit Blu-Ray on July 24th. But fear not, sci-fi fans, as TNG isn't just being dumped onto the format. Paramount has put the series through one of the most extensive restoration processes in the history of old TV shows being released on home video.
The end product of over a year's worth of work, each and every frame of all 26 episodes of the inaugural season has been painstakingly rescanned from the original 35mm film negatives, and each episode reconstructed based on the original scripts and editor notes. Why would a series shot on 35mm film need to be remastered for high def, you might ask? Because while the show itself was shot on film, the resulting footage was scanned into standard def video format before the numerous amounts of visual effects were created and added. So the main thrust of this remastering has been to recreate the special effects from scratch, and make them as breathtaking looking in HD as the rest of the show.
The whole process was supervised by Michael Okuda, a scenic designer and technical advisor on TNG, who had this to say about the need for a remaster - “This was bleeding-edge back in the day. [The standard-def process] made it possible to do Star Trek: The Next Generation. It was a far more ambitious series from a technical point of view than the original [Trek] series. But the downside of that is, a quarter-century later, all you have is standard definition. We have artists going frame-by-frame, recreating using digital tools what was done on analog video back then." Along with the episodes, the Blu-Ray release will also feature new interviews with both cast and crew.
Are you excited for Star Trek: The Next Generation's debut in high definition? Or have you never gotten what was so great about the show?