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ABC, Panasonic To Broadcast Monday Night Football In HDTV

ABC Television and Panasonic Broadcast and Television Systems are teaming up to broadcast Super Bowl XXXIV in 720P HDTV. The two will also show all 17 Monday Night Football games in 720P high-definition format. The HDTV telecasts will be produced and transmitted independent of ABC’s Monday Night Football on the traditional analog network.

“Live sporting events provide the best platform to demonstrate the viewing benefits of high definition television,” said Patricia Fili-Krushel, ABC TV Network president. “Monday Night Football offers the greatest opportunity to showcase HDTV to the American public.” This will be the thirtieth season ABC will produce Monday Night Football.

Panasonic will build and outfit a 720P HDTV mobile production truck, which will travel to all 17 Monday Night Football games, one wild-card playoff game and the Super Bowl in Atlanta, Ga., January 30, 2000. The mobile unit will be equipped with 720P studio cameras, recorders, monitors and support gear. In exchange for the equipment and production subsidies, Panasonic will receive a “billboard” announcement in the pre-game show on ABC’s analog and HDTV telecasts. Panasonic will also receiver commercial time during the HDTV broadcasts.

“Panasonic’s involvement with these broadcasts is representative of our corporate commitment to delivering an end-to-end solution for our customers,” said Warren Allgyer, president of Panasonic Broadcast & Television Systems Company. “By becoming involved in providing attractive HDTV programming, Panasonic is facilitating the entire DTV program process, from the program itself to the camera capturing it, all the way through to the DTV television set in the consumer’s home.”