Universal Pictures joins HDR10+ party

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment [UPHE] has said it will begin mastering catalogue and new release titles with HDR10+. The company says the dynamic HDR standard will feature on both physical (Ultra HD Blu-ray) and digital content.

HDR10+ is described by its creator, Samsung, as an 'open-source based next-generation video standard'. It's seen as a rival to Dolby Vision, as both formats utilise a dynamic metadata approach (which sees a 4K HDR TV given metadata on a scene-by-scene basis), as opposed to the static metadata implementation of HDR10.

While HDR10+ was first announced at the IFA technology show in 2017, it's only recently begun to grab a foothold in home cinemas through Ultra HD Blu-rays. Recent Twentieth Century Fox titles, including Widows and Bad Times at the El Royale, and incoming titles such as Alien, come with HDR10+ encodes. Lionsgate has also joined the HDR10+ camp with Robin Hood, and the debut IMAX Enhanced discs also feature the next-gen standard.

Hardware support for HDR10+ currently includes 4K HDR TVs from Samsung, Panasonic and Philips, and 4K Blu-ray players from Panasonic, Oppo and Pioneer.

Announcing the adoption of HDR10+ with the format's creator Samsung, Michael Bonner, Executive Vice President, Digital Distribution, UPHE said: 'We are delighted to team with Samsung Electronics on HDR10+ to deliver this striking, cutting-edge technology to entertainment consumers, providing them opportunity to enjoy unparalleled, state-of-the-art movie-watching experiences.'

UPHE is yet to confirm any titles that are in line for HDR10+ releases. Movies on its 2019 release slate (and therefore possibilities for HDR10+ 4K BDs) include Jordan Peele horror Us, Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, and The Secret Life of Pets 2.

Universal is also a supporter of Dolby Vision, and was the first studio to launch Dolby Vision 4K discs with Despicable Me and Despicable Me 2 in 2017. It may be that it adopts a multi-HDR approach with titles being offered with both DV and HDR10+ (as Lionsgate has done with Robin Hood).