ESPN HD To begin April 2003

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mike I, Sep 25, 2002.

  1. Mike I

    Mike I Supporting Actor

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    ESPN ANNOUNCES ESPN HD

    Plans Significantly Bolster Affiliates’ Efforts to

    Roll Out HDTV


    Bristol, Conn. - ESPN President George Bodenheimer announced today "a new chapter in ESPN’s history and the future of sports television" with plans to provide a high-definition simulcast service of its premier network ESPN to be launched in April of 2003. ESPN HD will include in its first year 100 live telecasts - featuring Major League Baseball, the National Basketball Association (NBA), the National Football League (NFL), and the National Hockey League (NHL) - produced and distributed in high-definition television (HDTV).


    "ESPN is making a significant commitment to spur the growth of high-definition television," said Bodenheimer. "Sports will be a key driver of HDTV, and it is only fitting, that ESPN plays a leadership role in serving our fans, affiliates, advertisers and rights holders in advancing the adoption of digital technology."

    Sean Bratches, ESPN executive vice president affiliate sales and marketing, said, "We were among the first to support our distribution partners with content for their digital rollouts, and today we’re thrilled to be extending that effort to high-definition television. ESPN has led the way in marrying the highest quality content with revolutionary technology, and we’re pleased to provide our distribution partners with what we believe to be the most compelling HDTV content -- sports."

    Telecasts to be produced in high-definition television in 2003 and 2004 include:

    Select games from Major League Baseball, the NBA, the NFL and the NHL

    A variety of ESPN Original Entertainment proprietary programming including the X Games, the world’s premier action sports event, Great Outdoors Games programming and the ESPY Awards

    Live college championship events including the Women’s Final Four and the ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament

    In addition to the programming mentioned above, most studio shows, including SportsCenter, will be added in 2004 providing an additional 3,700 hours of originally produced HDTV programming.

    All high-definition programming on ESPN HD will be delivered to cable systems and satellite providers in 720p high-definition format. ESPN will digitally convert the rest of the existing ESPN signal to 720p for viewing on high-definition television sets.

    ESPN HD will be managed by ESPN vice president Bryan Burns and will report to Rick Alessandri, vice president, ESPN Enterprises.

    - more -

    About ESPN

    ESPN, Inc., The Worldwide Leader in Sports, is a multinational, multimedia sports entertainment company featuring the broadest portfolio of multimedia assets in sports marketing with over 40 business entities. The company is comprised of six domestic television networks (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Classic, ESPNEWS, ESPN Now, ESPN Today), ESPN International (25 international networks and syndication), ESPN Radio, ESPN.com, ESPN The Magazine, ESPN Regional Television, SportsTicker and ESPN Enterprises, overseeing brand extensions such as ESPN Zone, an interactive sports-themed dining and entertainment experience. ESPN recently announced ESPN Deportes, a 24-hour Spanish-language network that will launch in the third quarter of 2003. Based in Bristol, Ct., ESPN is 80 percent owned by ABC, Inc, which is an indirect subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company. The Hearst Corporation holds a 20 percent interest in ESPN.
     
  2. Ray Suarez

    Ray Suarez Stunt Coordinator

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    All I can say is incredible!!!!

    Mike, where did you get this info? I can't find it anywhere on ESPN's website.

    Ray
     
  3. Michael St. Clair

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    This is huge for HD, and could also be a boost for 720p.

    Most bigscreen TVs are bought by sports fans, not HT buffs.
     
  4. CharlesD

    CharlesD Screenwriter

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    Woo-Hoo! [​IMG]
     
  5. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    You just know that every sports bar owner in the country is crying right now, for all the dough they'll have to shell out on new TV's. [​IMG]
    This is cool, I wonder if this will speed up HD on cable?
     
  6. Dave Falasco

    Dave Falasco Screenwriter

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    Boy I hope Dish picks this up. Sportscenter in HD?? Mmm, mmm good. [​IMG]
     
  7. Mike I

    Mike I Supporting Actor

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    I think you can count on Dish network to broadcast the ESPN HD feed
     
  8. Michael St. Clair

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  9. David Hicks

    David Hicks Stunt Coordinator

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    April, eh? It's gonna be a long winter.....
     
  10. Wayne Bundrick

    Wayne Bundrick Cinematographer

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    The decision to do 720p is of course influenced by ABC. Can this mean HD Monday Night Football and other sports on ABC will follow? I guess it depends on how many 720p trucks Disney plans to buy or lease, because it won't be possible to do the Sunday night game on ESPN followed by the Monday night game on ABC with just one truck.
     
  11. Ralph Summa

    Ralph Summa Supporting Actor

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    Oh, the horror! They should be beaten![​IMG]
     
  12. Raasean Asaad

    Raasean Asaad Supporting Actor

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    As a big sports fan this could only be a good thing, now if we could get more sports on ESPN as opposed to all the other garbage, I might watch it like I used to.
     
  13. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

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    Wow. I read this a few hours ago... I'm sooo psyched!
    ABC also announced that the Superbowl, NBA Finals and Stanley Cup Finals will be in HD. This should also confirm the rumors of MNF in HD next year (since ABC/ESPN will obviously share trucks.)
    And if that happens, CBS should start feeling pressure to broadcast some NFL games in HD as well.
    This is what HD really needs. And for some reason I think DTV will be able to find bandwidth for ESPN HD that they couldn't find for Discovery HD. [​IMG]
     
  14. Paul Jenkins

    Paul Jenkins Supporting Actor

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    ABC has confirmed that the 2003-2004 M.N.F. season will be in HDTV !
     
  15. John Berggren

    John Berggren Producer

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    This move by ESPN is going to sell some TVs. I can't wait!
     
  16. Dennis Reno

    Dennis Reno Supporting Actor

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    All right!!! Football and hockey are the ideal sports for HD. Combined with ABC announcing that the Super Bowl, Stanley Cup and NBA Finals will be in HD in '03 along with MNF next year this should help spur some HD sales over the next 3-6 months.
    Lets hope they bring back the glowing puck in 720p [​IMG]
    Yeah, yeah, I know, that was our friends over at Fux.
     
  17. Wayne Bundrick

    Wayne Bundrick Cinematographer

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    THE ABC TELEVISION NETWORK ANNOUNCES IT WILL BROADCAST

    MAJOR SPORTING EVENT FINALS, INCLUDING THE SUPER BOWL,

    GAMES OF THE NBA FINALS AND STANLEY CUP, IN HDTV

    2003-2004 Season of "Monday Night Football" Will Also Be Seen in HDTV



    ABC Television Network president Alex Wallau announced today that the
    most-watched and highest-profile sporting events of the year, including the
    Super Bowl, games of the National Basketball Association finals and the Stanley
    Cup, will be broadcast in HDTV on ABC this season. In addition ABC
    announced that it will broadcast the 2003-2004 season of "Monday Night Football"
    in HDTV.

    "Live sporting events provide the best platform to showcase the dramatic
    benefits of high definition television," said Mr. Wallau. "We're delighted to
    broadcast these sporting events in HDTV, including the most-watched television
    event of the year, the Super Bowl."

    ...

    ABC will air Super Bowl XXXVII on January 26, 2003, from San Diego, CA. The NBA
    finals are scheduled for June 4-18, 2003, and the Stanley Cup for May
    31-June 9, 2003.


     
  18. Mike I

    Mike I Supporting Actor

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    Actually the ABC announcement was prior to the ESPN announcment although as you say they are connected...
     
  19. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    With this announcement, I may have to rethink my STB strategy. My Samsung SIR-T150 ota-only box died a month ago, and I was considering another ota-only box. I may get something with satellite support now, just to cover the bases. Who knows when Comcast will get their act together in SE Michigan to deliver HD signals.

    I will need a new tuner before the Super Bowl, at the very least.
     
  20. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    As a professional sports reviler, I see this as a horrific thing

    As an HT enthusiast, I forcast, lower prices on sets, and more HD on programs that I care about. This is a VERY important step into mainstream HD
     

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