During the Batman Beyond twentieth anniversary celebration panel at Comic-Con International, Warner Bros. formerly announced that Batman Beyond will be released in high definition Blu-ray later this year. This is the latest complete series to make the jump up to high-definition in recent years with Batman: The Animated Series being upgraded last year. The new collection will feature a number of collectibles with the release and include a digital code packaged inside.
The set will include a special Funko pop, lenticular cards, a collection of all three seasons of fifty-two total episodes and Batman Beyond: The Return of the Joker animated film. Warner Bros. shared details on all of the episodes being upgraded for this project as well.
Of the 52 original Batman Beyond episodes, 41 have been fully-remastered from either their original 35mm film source or the uncommon format “OCND,” the original camera negative digital (a digital scan of original negative). Lines and resolution have been enhanced, and dust and dirt have been removed – however, cell dirt remains to not disturb the original picture. Included in the remastering was the removal of grain, resulting in enhanced colors. The remastering process does cause a slight aspect ratio change (approximately 3% loss of screen image).
Due to time-worn irreparable damage, the remaining 11 episodes were “Smart Rezzed” from standard definition Digibeta video. The process provides for significant enhanced resolution and improvement of the original source material in converting from standard to high definition, though it does sacrifice horizontal lines for clearer image and color representation. While still a marked improvement over the original video, viewers will notice a slight difference between the Remastered and the Up-Rezzed final footage. The 11 affected episodes are: “Eyewitness,” “Final Cut,” “The Last Resort,” “Armory,” “Sneak Peek,” “The Eggbaby,” “Zeta,” “Plague,” “April Moon,” “Sentries of the Lost Cosmos” and “Speak No Evil.”
The series will also release digitally in the upgraded format on all digital platforms on October 15 for $49.99. DC Universe announced that the upgraded episodes will take the place of the episodes already available on the service. The physical release will occur on October 29 for $99.99 and be available in limited quantities and numbered out of 5000. So mark your calendars to add this awesome release to you collection.