Star Trek TNG Being Remastered in HD & Coming to Netflix
They said it would never be done… they said it couldn’t be done, but it looks like it finally will be. Star Trek TNG is being remastered in HD for a Blu-ray, Netflix, and television release. Levar Burton (Geordi LaForge, TNG) commented with amazement on the quality of the transfers so far, so it looks like thousands of nerd dreams are coming true. These transfers are no simple task, though. Not only do they have to go through every piece of film for reconditioning, but there are thousands of hours of labor needed to try and salvage and recreate special effects. Not to mention that this task is definitely budgeted by Paramount and must live up to the extremely high (and occasionally nit-picking) standards us Star Trek fans have.
Unlike the Original Series, which was shot and edited in 35mm; The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, and Voyager were primarily edited using Beta tapes. These Beta tapes are a higher quality than VHS, but are inferior to DVD quality – hence the blurry and color-faded video on the DVD releases. The raw footage for TNG through Voyager was shot in 35mm film, so they have plenty of quality for an HD transfer. However, all of the special effects will need to be re-edited and likely recreated, much like they did with the Original Series Blu-Ray release. Flyby’s of the ship will likely be the same, as they were done with large-scale ship models, so they didn’t require a lot of digital editing.
In addition to HD episodes being brought to Blu-Ray, Netflix and Paramount’s channel, Epix, are also currently scheduled to get some content by October.
* Note: Digital Beta was likely used when it came out. Also, some later season footage of Voyager and possibly DS9 were edited by computer