This can be some update to a codec or WMP.
http://www.nwlink.com/~zachd/pss/pss.html notes how to uninstall WMP, find codecs and more.
Have you tried Windows Media Player Classic?
Recently, my Windows Media Player goes black at the end of any video I watch with it. It does not matter how long the video is .... I seem to lose the last minute or so.