A new DVD version of the Arnold Schwarzenegger hit movie "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" (T2) will feature a second disc with a high-definition (HD), full surround-sound version of the film encoded in Windows Media Video (WMV) 9 format, Microsoft and Artisan Home Entertainment revealed today. The DVD, called "T2 - Extreme DVD," is due June 3 and will give consumers with Windows XP-based PCs a significantly improved version of the film, which features previously unseen extra footage and almost three and a half times the video resolution of the typical DVD.

"Artisan Home Entertainment has always been a leader in the marketplace when it comes to meeting consumer demand, and as those demands become more and more sophisticated, we are proud to take the lead once again," said Steve Beeks, president of Artisan Home Entertainment. "With this exciting high-definition version of 'T2,' Artisan will provide consumers with the stunning visual and surround-sound capabilities of Windows Media 9 Series so they can experience critically acclaimed films like never before."

From a technical standpoint, the HD WMV 9 version of T2 should be impressive, unlocking visual details that are impossible to see in the low-resolution standard DVD version. Also, thanks to the disc's 5.1-channel Windows Media Audio (WMA) 9 surround sound, this version will also feature a stunning, thumping soundtrack and sound effects. Artisan has completely digitally remastered the Windows Media version of the film, frame by frame, Microsoft says.

In related news, Microsoft announced this morning that Artisan's "Standing in the Shadows of Motown," a two-disc DVD package released April 22, also includes a Windows Media 9 Series-enhanced DVD-ROM that offers a high-resolution format--almost two times the resolution of a standard DVD--for PC viewing. Also, Microsoft is giving XP users a free "Do Amazing Things" DVD that includes WMV 9 video content for playback on XP-based PCs and the first HD versions of three short films from the BMW Films Series "The Hire." The DVD also includes the full-length IMAX movie "The Living Sea" and coverage from Tony Hawk's "The Road to Boom Boom HuckJam." Although the "Do Amazing Things" DVD is free, if you order it online you'll pay a small shipping and handling charge.