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BLU-RAY SALES THREAD: Put all sales figures and comments here! - Page 278  

post #8311 of 11556
This data has been updated. Please go to the end pages of this thread for the latest versions.
post #8312 of 11556
Top 20 Unit Sales Estimate Year to Year Comparison Summary (The-Numbers.com*HMM %)

Updated thru week ending 4/11/10 units data.

2009 to 2010 YTYx      YTY + %(Week Ending 1/03/10-4/11/10 compared to matching 2009 period)
                              (The-Numbers.com reported DVD Top 20 units, calculated Blu-ray Top20 units)
Blu-ray    1.655       65.51 %
DVD        0.846      -15.39 %
DVD+BD     0.933        6.70 %  
EOY 2009 for the even weeks of the Nielsen Videoscan weekly reporting periods.

This data has been updated. Please go to the end pages of this thread for the latest versions.
post #8313 of 11556
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

Since this is a BD sales thread, let's keep the streaming talk out of it, please. Thanks.

Originally Posted by Kosty View Post

No problem.

Just thought it was it was modestly on topic as a lot of the longer perspective discussion on Blu-ray sales trends often has movie downloads as an alternative source and the lack of major growth in that area might have some impact on future Blu-ray sales trends.

But I see your point so I agree that its a good idea not to get into the direct comparisons there.

Good catch, as you wish kind sir.

Brought down just to reinforce the moderators request.
post #8314 of 11556
First report from week ending 4/18/10

Not much with no new releases and Avatar coming up the next week.


Sherlock Holmes’ Uncovers Success Again
'Alvin,' 'Blind Side' repeated in second, third spots

By Thomas K. Arnold
April 21, 2010, 06:15 PM ET

"Sherlock Holmes"
There's no stopping "Sherlock Holmes."

Aided by a dearth of new high-powered theatrical releases, the Warner Home Video actioner remained on top of the national home video sales and rental charts the week ending April 18.

"Sherlock" had no real competition for the top spot on the Nielsen VideoScan First Alert sales chart, snagging the No. 1 for the second consecutive week. 20th Century Fox's "Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel" and Warner's "The Blind Side" also repeated at No. 2 and No. 3.

The top-selling new release, the 20th Century Fox comedy "Crazy on the Outside," debuted at No. 4 after a limited theatrical release. The film marks the directorial debut of Tim Allen and opened in theaters without being screened for critics.

On Home Media Magazine's rental chart, "Sherlock" was No. 1 for the third consecutive week, with a modest 18% dip in rental demand. As they did on the sales chart, "Alvin" and "Blind Side" again finished at No. 2 and No. 3, with demanding slipping 18% and 24%, respectively.

"Pirate Radio," a comedy from Universal Studios that generated $8 million in theaters, debuted at No. 4, while "Crazy on the Outside" bowed at No. 10.

On the Nielsen VideoScan Blu-ray Disc chart, "Sherlock" regained the top spot after spending a week at No. 2. The previous week's top-selling Blu-ray Disc release, Warner's "Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy," fell to No. 5.


Top 20 Sellers for the Week Ended 4/18/10
Top 20 Selling Blu-ray Discs for the Week Ended 4/18/10

post #8315 of 11556
Hold steady, folks, 4/18 is going to be another downer.

But patience: 4/25 will be a barn-burner, making 4/11 and 4/18 little blips.
post #8316 of 11556
Only saving grace was last year the matching week was the one after Easter so it was pretty lame, but it did have a better new release TBO than this week endings 4/18/10 kinda pathetic TBO releases of $8.1 M. Thats even a worst TBO than last week ending 4/11/10 that had only $9.41 M TBO

Week ending 4/18/10 TBO

Street  Title             Box Office

4/13/10 Pirate Radio            $8.02
4/13/10 Defendor                $0.04
4/13/10 The Slammin' Salmon     $0.04
        Total Box Office Power: $8.10
Last years matching week revenue performance

135.79   DVD    
 10.79   BD
146.58   TL
Last years 2009 matching week TBO

Street  Title   Box Office

4/14/09 The Reader      $34.12
4/14/09 The Spirit      $19.81

        Total Box Office Power: $53.92
post #8317 of 11556
Here's the new release total box office TBO for 2010

171.11 Jan 2010

112.90 Feb 2010

258.77 Mar 2010

439.06 Apr 2010
009.41 4/11/10

008.90 4/18/10
837.62 4/25/10 Avatar
post #8318 of 11556
Blu-ray did a lot better than last year's matching week (not saying much there though) but the DVD and Blu-ray revenues were still less than last week.

Blu-ray top 20 unit marketshare was 18.68% for week ending 4/18/10.

I'll post the rest of the data when HMM puts the chart up.

Could have been worse. Calm before next weeks Avatar storm.
post #8319 of 11556
Originally Posted by rlsmith View Post

Hold steady, folks, 4/18 is going to be another downer.

But patience: 4/25 will be a barn-burner, making 4/11 and 4/18 little blips.

I wouldn't be surprised if the marketshare of every title in the Blu-ray Top 20 is in the low single-digits when measured against "Avatar's" '100' benchmark.
post #8320 of 11556
Week ending 4/18/10

$114.72 M DVD (down -15.52% YTY)

$15.77 M Blu-ray (up +46.20% YTY)

$130.49 M (DVD+BD) (down -10.98% YTY)

12.09% Blu-ray revenue marketshare (near the 12.31% YTD average)

18.68% Blu-ray top 20 unit marketshare (below the 19.67% YTD average)

Blu-ray was once again well up in the year to year weekly comparison mostly because it is being compared to a poor week last year after Easter. Much the same DVD and Blu-ray revenues from last week, the difference is last week was being compared to the 2009 Easter holiday week and this week is being compared to the 2009 post Easter holiday week.

A new record low 9.90 million new release total box office (TBO) for the new release box office down 84.97% from the previous year comparison week. Worst ever for that metric

Worst showing since 9/13/09 for DVD ( $103.87) , second worst showing for DVD weekly revenues on my charts going back to January 2008.

Worst revenue total for year for Blu-ray at $15.77 M, just barely behind 4/11/10 with 18.57 M 2/21/10 with $18.58 M and 1/17/10 with 18.94 M.

Blu-ray sales were below the year to date average $25.49 M but DVD sales were off the charts far below the DVD average of $178.00 M
post #8321 of 11556
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

I wouldn't be surprised if the marketshare of every title in the Blu-ray Top 20 is in the low single-digits when measured against "Avatar's" '100' benchmark.

They are going to look pretty puny.

Actually that would be the Index number on the Top 20 Sellers chart. Those are the combined units of the DVD + Blu-ray units sold of each title on the chart compared to the leading titles DVD+Blu-ray units sold at the Nielsen Videoscan first alert reporting retailers (basically every retailer except Walmart and Sams Club)

So the Index numbers there are the units of those titles compared to the leading titles units which are index 100.00. Yes indeed everything else except Avatar is going to look pretty damn tiny on both the Top 20 Sellers and Blu-ray Top 20 charts.

We usually are using marketshare to mean the Blu-ray : DVD ratio , those are going to be affected in some weird way as well, as Avatar is going to be just dominant.

The normal Tuesday new releases that get a couple days head start on Avatar might sell something, but they will be dwarfed by Avatar.

Street  Title        Box Office

4/22/10   Avatar                 $743.85
4/20/10 Crazy Heart             $38.83
4/20/10 The Young Victoria      $10.91
4/20/10 The Lovely Bones        $44.03
        Total Box Office Power: $837.62
post #8322 of 11556
Well there is the possibility that while people are in picking up their Avatar they may grab some other titles as well. I know if I'm making the trip to the store for a movie I'm not coming home with one. Then again if I make the trip to the store for a movie I'm lucky if I don't come how with a grand in HT gear. Maybe this is the wrong site to speculate on what people will get at the store.
post #8323 of 11556
Some thought of how pre orders affect retail ordering is from this article, its specific to Avatar too.

EDInomics with Steve Keifer

April 08, 2010

Avatar DVD Launch - The Supply Chain Challenges

Two weeks from today James Cameron’s Avatar will hit the shelves at retail stores. The film was nominated for nine Academy Awards and broke previous box office sales records making Avatar the highest grossing movie of all time. As a result, retailers and studios are expecting strong consumer demand for the DVD on its April 22nd launch date. Early indications confirm their assumptions. Avatar Blu-Ray is already ranked #1 on Amazon.com’s US bestseller list while the standard definition version is ranked #1 on the UK site. Much as with Apple’s iPad launch, there are significant supply chain challenges for retailers to forecast and fulfill the high demand for such major product launches. But some retailers will enjoy a natural competitive advantage over others due to their ability to better forecast consumer demand for Avatar sales through the use of web 2.0 technology.

Blockbuster DVD releases such as Avatar present challenges for studios and retailers particularly in the area of demand forecasting for new product launches. The first few weeks after a new title launch typically yield 80% of the lifetime sales for a DVD. Sales spike upon launch going from zero to maximum in a period of 24 hours. The demand planning challenge is further compounded by the need to stock multiple SKUs (e.g. Blu-Ray and Standard Definition Widescreen). Demand planning must also account for the percentage of consumers which will seek out digital versions of the product through cable and satellite provider on-demand services and Internet movie download sites.

With DVD revenues on the decline due to widespread adoption of Internet download alternatives, studios are concerned with maximizing sales of the physical media. Each out-of-stock scenario represents lost potential revenue and profit for both the retailer and studio. Alternatives to DVD purchases such as iTunes downloads, Netflix rentals and Comcast on-demand services typically yield far less revenue for the studios (and none for the retailers). Consequently, supply chain planners are highly focused on ensuring Avatar is in-stock at the right place and right time to meet consumer demand.

Historically, supply chain planners have done their best to guesstimate Day 1 sales before the launch. Post-launch planning is simplified as yesterday’s sales transactions can be analyzed to assess stock positions and calculate replenishment quantities. However, the prevalence of web 2.0 and B2C e-Commerce technologies are simplifying the demand forecasting challenge for new product launches. Pre-order functionality available from retailers such as Walmart.com, Barnesandnoble.com an Amazon.com enables supply chain planners to assess consumer demand weeks in advance of the actual product launch. Technologies such as online wish lists, shopping lists, gift registries and pre-order options entice consumers to tell retailers which products they plan to buy in advance of the purchase. Of course, only a subset of the consumer population will go to the trouble to pre-order the DVD in advance. But those which do pre-order provide meaningful insights that can be extrapolated to model broader sales forecasts.


Some thought of how pre orders affect retail ordering is from this article.
post #8324 of 11556
The Blu-ray version of Avatar is currently the #1 movie at Amazon with the DVD version ranked at #2.

post #8325 of 11556
From last month

Amazon's Avatar Blu-ray Pre-Orders Soar
March 19, 2010

Online retailer Amazon.com began taking pre-orders for James Cameron's Avatar on Blu-ray Disc + DVD combo yesterday and interest in the home video release is already paralleling its theatrical dominance.

Currently Avatar sits in the number one hourly bestsellers spot above The Twilight Saga: New Moon, a title due in stores tomorrow. Avatar does this with Fox choosing to utilize disc space to max out audio and video now and save supplemental features for a special edition release in November.

Avatar on Blu-ray is pre-selling for $25 with an April 22 release date.


Also from last month on the Blu-ray pre orders:


Half of Avatar Preorders Are for the Blu-ray

Posted March 26, 2010 09:37 AM by Juan Calonge

During the recent Avatar press event, James Cameron stated that about 50% of Avatar presales are for the Blu-ray version, a much higher percentage than the 15% usually seen on other titles. The filmmaker said that the public is "definitely excited about the Blu-ray release and pre-selecting for the most premium version in which they can see Avatar in a home environment."

As to how that percentage would ultimately translate to total sales, Cameron couldn't say, at this point. "We'll find out in a month."

James Cameron saw a parallel between this situation and what happened when the movie was released theatrically: while Avatar was being "wildly" pirated, "people were lining up and we were selling out in theaters." He concluded: "I think the wider public has made a decision that they want that premium experience."

IIRC its also the first time that Amazon pre orders for a major release are more for the Blu-ray version than the DVD version, but Amazon is going to have a higher split than the rest of retail and extra DVD sales at Walmart will balance that to a degree.
post #8326 of 11556
The presales ratio numbers are confusing. It would be awesome news if the BD came out, outselling the DVD on such a major title. But If BD is either close or out selling DVD isn't that a sign that over all sales are weak considering the BD player penetration?
post #8327 of 11556
If any one missed Bill Hunt yesterday he had this to say.

We've been asking around at the studios, and while none seem to really want to go on the record on the issue, what we've essentially been told is that catalog titles just aren't selling very well right now - not on DVD or Blu-ray. Even digital download sales have tapered off in the last year. So the studios are struggling to justify the higher spending required to really properly remaster some of these titles for high-definition, and to create new bonus content... or even port over everything from the DVD. Of course, this introduces a bit of a chicken/egg problem: The studios are leery of spending too much money to really add value and new extras on BD catalog titles, because of lackluster sales. But consumers, on the other hand, aren't buying them BECAUSE they really don't have much in the way of extras. On top of this, it seems that nearly every catalog Blu-ray that DOES come out gets sharply criticized on enthusiast forums - sometimes for good reason, but often unjustly because of unrealistic expectations and a lack of understanding about the nature of older film stocks and the limits of remastering - for having an HD transfer that disappoints. (Actually, the usual tone is more like: "This disc sucks!! ______ is SCREWING US AGAIN!!) This has happened even in cases when the studio HAS actually spent a lot of money to remaster the film in question. They're getting slammed no matter what they do, so in many cases they're simply choosing, for the time being, NOT to release much-loved catalog titles that they feel will receive too much criticism no matter how remastered. The hope is that as the recession gradually wanes, consumer spending on catalog titles will improve and then the studios will get a bit more aggressive again.

Obviously, there are exceptions: Fox has the elaborate Alien Anthology box set coming later this year. DreamWorks (via Paramount) is about to release Saving Private Ryan. And Warner is soon to bow Dr. Zhivago and other classics on Blu-ray. But again, these are key titles. In general, the studios tell me, it's easier for them to justify spending a little more money on fewer but more A-list/marquee catalog titles, than it is to really take a risk on a larger number of B and C-list titles that are more likely to draw enthusiasts' fire.

On the other hand, consumers ARE entirely justified in complaining about another studio practice with regard to their catalog Blu-ray titles: Potential double-dipping. It was one thing when studios released the same film in 2, 3 or even 4 or more editions on DVD over the years, but the idea that they'd repeat the practice on Blu-ray too - which is marketed and priced as (and is intended to be) a premium product - has many film fans and avid disc buyers rightly incensed, especially in these tough economic times. But that's a whole other story...

In any case, what we have right now is just a difficult situation all around with regard to catalog Blu-rays - one that I think we all hope will improve soon. But a lot of you have been asking about this subject in recent weeks, so I've investigated a bit and I'm just telling you what I'm hearing privately from my studio sources.


I find Bill comes off as a bit of an appoligist at times. Thoughts?
post #8328 of 11556
Originally Posted by jvillain View Post

I find Bill comes off as a bit of an apoligist at times. Thoughts?

I think he is trying to report on the studios views so I don't see it as overly sympathetic.

It is a complicated situation. I believe all of these things.

1. As a consumer who has already purchased a catalog title--sometimes even both an LD and a DVD--I really want the Blu-ray to be most excellent before I purchase. I also don't want to pay another big price when the title is selling on DVD for $7 or so. If they can't do it right, I can wait. I did not buy LOTR for example.
2. I agree that the studios will read (or misread) the situation to discourage them from publishing catalog titles. However, they should understand that no one can buy what they refuse to sell. The studios were very lucky in the VHS and DVD days: they could put something marginal out and people would snap it up. Many of the VHS titles 30 years ago were made from 16mm sources or 35mm TV prints. They sold well. The studios also found they could remaster and improve and sell again. They got into the habit that they didn't have to market or cater to the customer. Now they have to EARN our patronage with Blu-ray titles that are really excellent and well priced if they want to sell. But the days of unexpected and unearned riches are over.
3. I also think that Blu-ray adoption has been hampered by the lack of a broad range of catalog titles. The PS3 demographic is still the driving force behind Blu-ray I think. We see Sony shipping Jason and the Argonauts, where is The Bridge on the River Kwai that Sony has been talking about for 4 years? No wonder many film buffs are waiting.
4. Fans are putting a lot of pressure, often unfairly, on the quality of titles. We need to remember what the deficiencies in the source material are. For example: I think that The Longest Day is a fine disk, to name one blasted title, and I have some evidence for this claim. Ditto Apollo 13. Patton, however, has been damaged with too much DNR, so it does go both ways. Given the furor over LOTR, I wonder what people are going to say about Star Wars when it finally comes out. The Phantom Menace has problems beyond Jar-Jar that a Blu-ray transfer will make very apparent.
5. Customers are also putting contradictory requirements on studios about both how films are to be restored and what should be on the disks. I ask myself: what if I were in charge of Blu-ray catalog at one of the studios? I am not sure what I would do. DNR (and hear complaints about the lack of detail) or don't DNR (and hear about all of the grain and digital noise).
post #8329 of 11556
Anecdotal observations from the nearest Walmart Supercenter, Sam's Club, Best Buy and Target in my home market of first day Avatar sales:

Both the DVD and Blu-ray sales are going to be huge for this title and its going to have a halo effect on other Blu-ray software and hardware sales.

My local Walmart Supercenter received over 1000 copies on DVD and over 300 copies of the Blu-ray+DVD combo pack. As of 5:00 pm today on Thursday they had already sold more than 265 of the DVDs and over 115 of the Blu-ray+DVD versions. They already had a reorder in for the Blu-ray+DVD sku. They had the title in multiple locations in the store, at the front on a cardboard stand with Blu-ray on on end and DVD mostly on the other two main sides, with 800+ DVD slots and 220+ Blu-ray slots, with the Blu-ray sold half through. The regular Blu-ray section, a new release Blu-ray section and a isle display in electronics and a isle end cap display. They already had to cross stock between sections as some areas were selling faster.

Walmart had also sold out of most of their $78 and sub $120 Blu-ray players in the last couple days as well.

Target had sold around 60 copies by 5:00 pm also and had sold more Blu-ray+DVD skus than the DVD only one. The $3 bonus on select other Blu-ray titles was also having a halo effect as I had just saw their Blu-ray stock on display a couple days ago and it was half depleted.

Best Buy had sold about as many Blu-ray copies as Target but not as many of the DVD versions. My Best Buy and Target was selling more of the Blu-ray+DVD sku than the DVD version.

It was hard to judge the Blu-ray+DVD version sales at my local Sam's Club as they had the DVD versions on the display buy only paper cards with barcodes to take to the register. I was told the Blu-ray was selling well, but they moved to that system as they had caught a couple people trying to shoplift the Avatar Blu-ray disc from the store sometime in the morning.

My personal observations put this as selling more Blu-ray discs in my local market in less than a day than either The Dark Knight, Terminator Salvation, Harry Potter HBP 2012 did in a week of sales.

I'm sure the 1st day sales would trend more to the Blu-ray version, but the Target sale looks to be particularly effective and Walmart is selling more Blu-ray than I expected while Best Buy is about where I expected them to be.
post #8330 of 11556
I'm not sure if the knowledge of future 3D and extended versions is going to have any effect on the initial sales of Avatar.

Personally for me among the people I personally know that are enthusiasts, all knew of the upcoming special and 3D releases and all but one were going to get the Blu-ray+DVD version anyway in the interim. I know that s not the case on the forums here, with a lot of vocal comments about waiting, but thats not my personal experience with real life.

Based on my anecdotal observations alone in my local market, which has trended pretty typical and I personally know from a consumer market research standpoint is a great project-able sales market, this title is selling DVD and Blu-ray at a rate commensurate with its huge box office performance, at least in first day sales. In half a Thursday its sold more copies than most major titles sell in the first week.

Its going to be real curious where it ends up.
post #8331 of 11556
Originally Posted by jvillain View Post

The presales ratio numbers are confusing. It would be awesome news if the BD came out, outselling the DVD on such a major title. But If BD is either close or out selling DVD isn't that a sign that over all sales are weak considering the BD player penetration?

Well it could also mean that the effective attach rate for the title is higher for PS3 and Blu-ray player owners than it is for regular DVD owners, which is the rest of the US population at this point.

Both could be huge. DVD could be huge because its going to sell well to a lot of people and more people own DVD players than Blu-ray players. The Blu-ray could sell at a higher rate than usual in Blu-ray vs DVD marketshare as more of the smaller base of Blu-ray and PS3 owners are a better match for the title.

Some additional people may see a $5 or less cost to get the Blu-ray+DVD version and say why not get that over the DVD version.

Last thing is the preorders will trend to be more Blu-ray than DVD as those are geekier more tech comfortable people and all preorders hit the first day of sales.
post #8332 of 11556
I think any Blu-ray should include all the extras that the DVD versions had before it had, unless their is a rights issue to the content. For a catalog title, I think there is no excuse not to include all the former DVD special features and it irritates me to no end when it happens when I can clearly see the potential for a future re release double dip.

But the deliberate pace of catalog title releases does not surprise me at all, thats what I get told as well, and I fully understand why its not happening for major titles until the Blu-ray ownership base and household penetration is larger.

As I have said before, I'm actually surprised its a large as it already is at this point and I myself have more than enough personally to watch in the meantime.
post #8333 of 11556
It's an odd thing because, about two hours ago, I was going to post my anecdotal observations about the sales of Avatar.

I visited the local "big three" sellers and found zero activity near the Avatar displays. While I don't doubt it will be a huge seller, I couldn't help but think that the local retailers WAY over stocked. Every display I saw was packed with Avatar discs and I couldn't see where any had been picked up (there were no gaps in the shelves). Of course, the stores could be continuously restocking. But I saw nobody looking at them, nobody hanging around the displays and nobody in line at the cash registers. The poor retailers are stacked to the rafters with this title.

I bought THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT for $9.83 and CASABLANCA for $12.83 (been waiting for that one to come down in price).
post #8334 of 11556
Worth getting other anecdotal observations.

If its near what I saw, we will probably get some word at sites like HMM soon about Avatar first day sales or initial weekend sales.
post #8335 of 11556

1.5 mil sold on Blu-ray. No official Fox press release yet.
post #8336 of 11556
Update on my anecdotal Walmart observations. Just came back before midnight and they had sold another 70-75 Blu-ray units and only had them left at the front of the store on the bottom shelves of the cardboard isle display. So thats one Walmart Supercenter in my area that sold around 185 copies of the Blu-ray+DVD sku.
post #8337 of 11556
Nikki from Deadline Hollywood has no PR spin to make. 1.5 million on Blu-ray first day beats the 600,000 of The Dark Knight on a holiday Dec holiday week to shame for a first day sales record, I think a lot of that came from Walmart and Amazon so thats why Fox is not beating down the PR doors.
post #8338 of 11556
Amazon reporting worldwide Q1 YTY sales growth of 26% to $3.43 billion for media which includes DVD and Blu-ray.


Amazon Enjoys Giant Q1

By : Chris Tribbey | Posted: 22 Apr 2010

Online retailer Amazon.com watched its first quarter sales increase 46% year-over-year to $7.13 billion, the company reported April 22. Revenue was at $7.13 billion.

For the quarter (ended March 31), Amazon posted a $299 million profit, up 68% from the $177 million it pulled in during the same quarter of 2009.

We remain heads-down focused on customers, said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com. Amazon Prime has just celebrated its fifth anniversary, adoption of Amazon Web Services continues to accelerate, Kindle remains our No. 1 bestselling product, and earlier this week, Kindle selection reached 500,000 titles.

Worldwide media sales, which includes DVD and Blu-ray Disc, grew 26% in the quarter to $3.43 billion. Electronics grew 72% to $3.51 billion.

For the second quarter, Amazon is expecting sales between $6.1 billion and $6.7 billion, with earnings of up to $320 million.

post #8339 of 11556

'Avatar' sets first-day Blu-ray sales record

By Carl DiOrio
April 22, 2010, 08:36 PM ET


Featuring a 2D version of the theatrical blockbuster for now, DVDs and Blu-ray discs of James Cameron's "Avatar" were flying off store shelves Thursday, the movie's first day in stores.

Recent market momentum for Blu-ray enthusiasm was apparent, as Blu-ray sales of "Avatar" -- at 1.5 million copies -- well outpaced first-day sales of previous high-def top dog "The Dark Knight."

An early industry estimate set overall disc sales of the title comfortably north of 4 million units, putting it well on track to become the year's top-selling release to date.

Retailers sold out of 60% of their Blu-ray inventory on average, a Fox rep said. He declined to specify unit shipments.

Mass merchants moved out roughly 50% of their "Avatar" DVDs, the spokesman added.

Due to the epic's ecological theme, Fox Home Entertainment broke with the industry's Tuesday release date norm and scheduled the title's disc releases to coincide with Earth Day. Cameron and others connected to the film have been participating in a host of green-themed events as part of the movie's home-entertainment campaign.

Cameron and pic producer Jon Landau attended a symbolic tree-planting ceremony on the Fox lot Thursday.

"We're not focusing on sales," "Avatar" producer Jon Landau said. "We're focusing on the events. There were 300 kids there today. They're the future, so this is raising awareness, and that's a great thing."

A 3D version of the pic is expected to hit Blu-ray Disc early next year. Fox and the filmmakers wanted to wait until a greater number of homes were equipped with 3D Blu-ray players.

Though 3D-enabled players only recently became available, virtually all new Blu-ray players will boast that capability by year's end.

The first DVDs lack even special features of the sort typically included on disc releases. A special edition release is expected to hit stores in November and will include extensive bonus features.

"We could not have had the special material we wanted to have but will have it for the special edition," Landau said.

Despite the lean-and-mean nature of the release, Fox figures "Avatar" eventually will surpass Summit/Universal's "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" as the year's best-selling disc. "New Moon" moved 4 million units in its first two days -- after launching on a Friday, at midnight -- and has sold 6.5 million copies on DVD and Blu-ray to date.

Many Best Buy locations and other retailers stayed open until midnight Wednesday to allow witching-hour early birds to flock to stores and snatch the first "Avatar" discs.

"To me, about it's never about opening day," Landau insisted. "It's, where are you after your third weekend? I think we as an industry, and as consumers, have been putting too much emphasis on opening days."

post #8340 of 11556

Recent market momentum for Blu-ray enthusiasm was apparent, as Blu-ray sales of "Avatar" -- at 1.5 million copies -- well outpaced first-day sales of previous high-def top dog "The Dark Knight."

An early industry estimate set overall disc sales of the title comfortably north of 4 million units, putting it well on track to become the year's top-selling release to date.

Retailers sold out of 60% of their Blu-ray inventory on average, a Fox rep said. He declined to specify unit shipments.

Mass merchants moved out roughly 50% of their "Avatar" DVDs, the spokesman added.

Thats pretty much what I saw at my local Walmart Supercenter by the end of the day.

I was told their reorder system had already kicked in.
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