MovieIQ For BD-Live Displays Online Movie Info In Real Time, Encourages Insufferable Film Geekery

From September, all new Sony Pictures Blu-ray discs will support MovieIQ, a service which grabs IMDB-esque data from the Internet to show during playback. How BD-Live hadn't already been used to do something like this, I have no idea.

MovieIQ pulls everything from cast lists and crew info to soundtrack data and production trivia from the Sony-owned Gracenote video database—a name that might sound familiar, since it's also one of the biggest CD databases in the world, and the one the iTunes uses to identify and name your discs. You can peruse the data manually, or wait for a (disable-able) icon in the corner or the screen, which shows up when info about a particular scene is available.

There's no way to tell how rich the database will be—meaning, how well it will compare to IMDB—but the concept is solid, if a little late. Honestly, when Sony announced in 2006 that BD-Live would bring interactive, online content to Blu-ray players, this, I think, is was most people expected from the start. [SonyInsider via Techradar]

San Francisco, CA (June 18, 2009) - Sony Pictures Home Entertainment today announced the launch of movieIQ, a new Blu-ray Disc feature powered by Gracenote® that offers viewers access to a real-time movie database. With a movieIQ-enabled Blu-ray Disc and an internet-connected Blu-ray™ player, movie fans can immediately access continuously-updated information on cast and crew and explore relevant trivia such as production facts, music and soundtrack information all tied to scenes within the movie. SPHE will feature movieIQ on upcoming Blu-ray Disc titles starting in September and will offer it on all major catalog titles and new releases including Angels & Demons, Easy Rider, Punch Drunk Love, The Quick and the Dead, Silverado and sex, lies, and videotape.

"It has always been our goal at Sony Pictures to offer fans the ability to truly connect with their favorite movies using BD-Live," said Lexine Wong, Senior Executive Vice President of Worldwide Marketing at Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. "We know many people interrupt their movie-watching experience to look up the filmography of an actor or to find out more about a song playing in the background. Now through movieIQ, movie lovers can dive into constantly-updated information about the movie they are watching without leaving their sofa, further enhancing the experience of watching movies in this always-connected age."

movieIQ takes advantage of Gracenote's Video Explore solution, which brings powerful search and navigation capabilities to connected consumer electronic devices. Video Explore allows users to search the online Gracenote video database, linking together related cast, crew, movies, TV episodes, franchises, seasons, DVDs, and Blu-rays. Gracenote's global Video database contains rich video information for North America, Europe, and Japan, including factual metadata, synopses, credits, and detailed descriptive elements.

"We are thrilled to be partnering with Sony Pictures to deliver movieIQ, a feature that takes full advantage of the Blu-ray format's internet connectivity and truly demonstrates that Blu-ray is the future of home entertainment," said Ross Blanchard, VP of Business Development at Gracenote. "Now, movie lovers will have access to an incredible new service where they can explore and discover all the rich details on their favorite actors, directors and movies."

The movieIQ feature is the latest addition to SPHE's BD-Live portfolio, which also includes social networking through cinechat, multiplayer games, and a customizable music video editor, as well as soundtrack playlists, e-movie cash, downloadable featurettes, and more, available on over 100 Sony Pictures Blu-ray titles worldwide since the technology launched in spring of 2008.

About Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is a Sony Pictures Entertainment company. SPE is a division of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; digital content creation and distribution; worldwide channel investments; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of filmed entertainment in 67 countries. Sony Pictures Entertainment can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.sonypictures.com.

About Gracenote
Gracenote, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, is a global leader in embedded technology, enriched content, and data services for digital entertainment solutions within the Internet, consumer electronics, mobile, and automotive markets. Formerly known as CDDB®, Gracenote delivers a substantially improved consumer experience in digital media devices and applications, plus media monitoring and other data services to the recording industry, making it an integral part of the digital media economy. Gracenote powers leading services including Apple iTunes, Yahoo! Music Jukebox, Winamp; home and automotive products from Alpine, Panasonic, Philips and Sony; and mobile music applications from Samsung, Sony Ericsson, KDDI (Japan), KTF (Korea), Musiwave (Europe), and others. Gracenote is headquartered in Emeryville, California. www.gracenote.com/corporate/.