P R E S S R E L E A S E
IN A MAJOR COMMITMENT TO HDTV PROGRAMMING, ABC ANNOUNCES IT WILL BROADCAST ALL OF ITS PRIMETIME COMEDIES, DRAMAS AND THEATRICALS IN HDTV THIS SEASON
In a major commitment to high-definition television programming, ABC Television Network president Alex Wallau announced today that ABC will broadcast all of its primetime comedy and drama series, as well as all theatrical movies, in HDTV for the 2001-02 television season.
ABC was the first network to broadcast in HDTV, beginning in November, 1998, and it is the only network currently broadcasting its HD programming in Dolby Digital 5.1-channel surround sound. All of ABC's programs will use 720 Progressive (720P), ABC's selected HDTV format.
"ABC is totally committed to bringing the best possible viewing experience to our audiences through HDTV technology, " said Mr. Wallau. "ABC's fall programs are an especially powerful way of showcasing the amazing technology of HDTV."
The announcement will bring the total number of hours that ABC is broadcasting in HDTV to more than 60% of its primetime schedule. In addition to "NYPD Blue," which became ABC's first regularly scheduled entertainment series to be broadcast in high definition last season, the series to be broadcast in HDTV include "Dharma & Greg," "Spin City," "Philly," "My Wife and Kids," "The Drew Carey Show," "Thieves," "Once and Again," "The Practice," "What About Joan," "Bob Patterson," "According to Jim," "The Job," "The Wonderful World of Disney," "The ABC Big Picture Show," "The Court," "The Web" and "Alias."
Since it began broadcasting in HDTV in 1998 and through November of this year, ABC will have broadcast 71 theatrical titles in HDTV. This includes more than 40 theatrical movies in HDTV last season. The network will continue to broadcast all theatricals in HDTV for the 2001-02 season.
The first HDTV broadcast of the new season will be the one-hour season premiere of "Dharma & Greg" on September 18, from 8:00-9:00 p.m. ABC began broadcasting high-definition television, including Dolby Digital 5.1-channel surround sound, on November 1, 1998, with the theatrical presentation of "The Wonderful World of Disney: 101 Dalmatians." Since then ABC has broadcast many other theatricals in HDTV, as well as numerous sporting events. Those events include the first live, regularly scheduled HDTV sporting event in primetime, the 1999-2000 season of "Monday Night Football." ABC has also broadcast "Super Bowl XXXIV" and the "2000 National Hockey League All-Star Game" in HDTV.
ABC Media Relations: Susan Sewell (212) 456-1508