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Adding Magic on Harry Potter DVD

Techstination feature for Wednesday, May 15, 2002

Harry Potter and high tech magic. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone arrives on DVD from Warner Home Video at the end of this month and the two disc set includes some added magic for PCs equipped with DVD ROM drives. Using a computer microphone kids can navigate through games and special features using their voice. One Voice Technologies created the capability. VP Mike Isgrig...

"Warner Brothers was very excited about putting together something that was very novel and new for this big movie release and we're just happy that we could play a role and help them do that."

The idea is to make the DVD itself seem magical...

"What Warner Brothers has done is they've put together a package of value added pieces on the second DVD. It includes everything from clips from the movie, outtakes, games, fun facts and basically what you can do using your voice is you can go to any of these sections, you can use a variety of different key words that are related to the movie, like Hogwarts for example and it'll take you right to that section."

Is it a gimmick? Of course. But I'm not so sure it's a necessary one in terms of helping DVD sales. Harry generated 320 million dollars at the box office... the number two film of all time. And in more than a few households the release of the 27 dollar DVD and 25 dollar video tape versions mean it will be playing non stop until parents find a way for it to magically disappear. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.