Geared towards comic book and genre fans, Agent DVD Insider scoops DVD and Blu-Ray release announcements and news, along with commentary from industry experts and fellow comic fans.
'Hitman: Agent 47' promotional image in Best Buy circular
With 2015 coming to a close, the new releases of the final week of the year went mostly unheralded at retail.
In fact, a Target store in Tustin even neglected to put Fox's Hitman: Agent 47 on its shelves, though it's not unheard of for clerks to forget to bring new releases to the floor. The action film comes with a pack-in comic book, a bonus heavily touted in Best Buy's weekly ad circular.
The week was primarily dominated by clearance sales.
Target touted clearance discounts on hundreds of video games, as well as discounts on recent hit DVD and Blu-ray movies.
Best Buy pushed fitness DVDs for $7.99 each, 3D Blu-rays for $12.99 each, TV DVD seasons for $9.99 each, and more categories.
'Force Awakens' preorder kit (left) and display at Best Buy
Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens was barely in theaters before retailers started taking preorders for Disney's eventual Digital HD release of the film.
Best Buy even had a seperate display for the preorder, which consists of a limited-edition package of three mini-posters from the film's marketing campaign. Best Buy's preorder price is $24.99.
Walmart offered the preorder package in its new-release section, for $24.96.
Best Buy is also taking preorders for HBO's Game of Thrones: The Complete Fifth Season for a $10 deposit. Fans can choose from exclusive covers depicting the house sigils for either the Martells or the Targaryens. The Blu-ray arrives March 15.
In addition, Best Buy is offering a $1.99 Minion scarf with the purchase of Universal's Minions, one of the "Despicable Me" movies or from a selection of 15 titles.
Target is offering a $10 gift card with preorders of Fox's The Martian on DVD or Blu-ray. The film arrives on disc Jan. 12. Target is also giving away $10 gift cards with the purchase of two movies from a select list.
Walmart has a special DVD gift set pairing Sony Pictures' War Room with other faith-based titles from the same production team: a two-pack of Courageous and Facing the Giants.
Walmart's 'Ted 2' gift set
With the holiday shopping season picking up, four big titles hit retail Dec. 15 and each had a variety of retailer exclusives to entice customers — Paramount's Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation, Universal's Ted 2, and Fox's Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials and the Fantastic Four reboot.
Each of the four was available with a special steelbook case — Rogue Nation, Scorch Trials and Fantastic Four at Best Buy and Ted 2 at Target. Best Buy also offered a steelbook of a collection of all five "Mission: Impossible" films for $39.99, and a steelbook of the first Maze Runner for $14.99. Shoppers who bought both "Maze Runner" steelbooks could save $5.
Best Buy offered Ted 2 with a tie-in promotional opportunity to buy a plush talking Ted doll for $4.99 with purchase of the film on Blu-ray. (the bear on its own is priced at $9.99).
Target offered photo-book packaging with the Blu-rays of Rogue Nation, Scorch Trials and Fantastic Four. Rogue Nation also came with an exclusive bonus disc containing featurettes about the film's stunts.
Walmart offered a DVD two-pack of the "Maze Runner" movies and a Blu-ray gift set of Ted 2 with a "Legalize Ted" T-shirt.
Best Buy ran a sale on HBO and BBC titles, with buyers receiving a $10 gift card for spending $50 or $25 for spending $100.
Amazon seemed to be having some inventory issues with Ted 2, Scorch Trials and Fantastic Four, listing Blu-rays (and the Ted 2 DVD) as available in a few days or as out of stock. This comes in the wake of Amazon dropping preorders for many Fox titles.
'Minions' Exclusives: Target's metal case, Walmart's water bottle set, Best Buy's lunchbag
It comes as little surprise that Universal's Minions and Marvel's Ant-Man would arrive at retail with a number of exclusive options.
Most of the buzz surrounded Minions, with the biggest deals coming from Target, which offered a number of exclusive packaging options for the Blu-ray combo pack (non-3D). Consumers could choose from three different box art variants for $18.99, or a deluxe metal case version for $22.99. The metal case touted 40 minutes of extra content and a $5 Minions-themed Target gift card. Target also had the Blu-rays of the two "Despicable Me" movies for $10 each.
Best Buy offered a free lunchbag with the purchase of a Minions Blu-ray, while Walmart offered a Blu-ray gift set containing the non-3D combo pack and a water bottle.
For Ant-Man, Best Buy had a steelbook case for the 3D Blu-ray, while Target offered online access to the featurette "Ant-Man: The Biggest Little Hero in the M.C.U."
Target also had the DVD and Blu-ray of Hannibal: Season Three with a collector's booklet, as well as a $14.99 Blu-ray two-pack of Home Alone and Home Alone 2 with a knit cap.
Best Buy's upcoming 'Fantastic Four' steelbook Blu-ray
The last month of the year begins with a light slate of new releases, but big promotions on preorders for upcoming titles.
Best Buy touted steelbook Blu-rays on preorders for upcoming titles such as Fox's Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials and Fantastic Four, and Paramount's Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation. Best Buy also has a lunch bag with Universal's Minions. The preorders are $19.99 each and come with $5 in Best Buy Rewards credits.
Best Buy also has a steelbook of the James Bond: The Daniel Craig Collection.
Another promotion at Best Buy involved Microsoft's Halo: Fall of Reach DVD and Blu-ray, with a 20% savings for Best Buy Gamers Club members.
Walmart had a special DVD two-pack of the first seasons Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's "Angry Birds: Stella" and "Piggy Tales."
Heading into the Thanksgiving weekend, studios didn't put many major new titles out on Nov. 24.
Among the most notable new releases, the only big retailer exclusive was a bonus holiday DVD included with copies of Lionsgate's Shaun the Sheep Movie at Target.
Interestingly, a Target in Tustin, Calif., didn't have most of the week's new titles stocked in the new release section. In fact, some of the DVD space was actually devoted to copies of Adele's new CD. Target copies have three exclusive tracks.
Target also had the relatively recent Terminator: Genisys Blu-ray for just $11.
The Hunger Games
A new promotion at Best Buy offered $8 movie coupons for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2 with the purchase of earlier titles in the franchise on disc. The coupons can also be found in DVD and Blu-ray copies of Divergent and Insurgent. Lionsgate releases the new film in theaters Nov. 20.
Otherwise, the Nov. 17 week was mostly devoid of new releases on DVD and Blu-ray disc, with Warner's The Man From U.N.C.L.E. and an extended cut of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies being the only major new titles on shelves among a slew of smaller fare.
In fact, one of the most anticipated new releases for the week was the new Star Wars: Battlefront video game, which attracted a slew of exclusive deals.
Target offered a $10 gift card with purchase of the game in conjunction with a six-pack of Coke Zero bottles. Target also offered $100 off an LG 42-inch TV with purchase of a PlayStation 4.
Best Buy offered free "Star Wars" Pop! character figurines with the purchase of the new game or a PS4 bundle containing the game.
Best Buy's and Target's 'Terminator: Genisys' covers
Retailers Nov. 10 doubled down with exclusives for Paramount's Terminator: Genisys and Universal's Trainwreck.
The fifth "Terminator" movie came with a variety of packaging configurations from which consumers could choose (not an unusual strategy for Paramount). Best Buy offered the 2D Blu-ray combo pack with a lenticular cover and more than 90 minutes of exclusive behind-the-scenes content. Target offered the Blu-ray with a steelbook case. Walmart offered the Blu-ray packed with a copy of the original "Terminator" film.
For Trainwreck, Best Buy offered the Blu-ray of the raunchy comedy with 30 minutes of exclusive deleted scenes. Target offered a one-year subcription to Entertainment Weekly. Walmart offered the Blu-ray in a gift pack with a T-shirt.
Among other titles, Best Buy offered a $20 gift card with the purchase of both the first season of "Better Call Saul" and disc and a Best Buy-esclusive DVD set of the first three seasons of "Breaking Bad" that came with six coasters.
Disney's Inside Out arrived at retail Nov. 3 with several exclusives.
Target offered the latest Pixar animated film with 20 minutes of exclusive content and deleted scenes included with the Blu-ray combo packs, such as a "Drawing With Your Inner Child" featurette.
Best Buy offered The Blu-ray versions of Inside Out with five character cards.
Best Buy also offered $10 discounts on a couple of TV titles new to disc when purchased with earlier seasons: Fox's A.D. — The Bible Continues when purchased with The Bible on DVD or Blu-ray, and Anchor Bay's Black Sails: The Complete Second Season when purchased with the first season.
Speaking of A.D., Amazon, possibly as a result of other ongoing irregularities with Fox titles, wasn't directly selling the ttile on its debut date, but did have copies available via its third-party Marketplace sellers. Amazon listed its own availability the next day but posted the Blu-ray version at full suggested retail price.
As for "Black Sails," Target offered the second season with exclusive steelbook packaging on both the DVD and Blu-ray.
With the new Blu-ray steelbook editions of the first and second seasons of "Game of Thrones," Target offered $10 off a tie-in POP figure ($8.99) with the purchase of one of the seasons (at $39.99 each).
Warner announced that Target would have exclusive availablility of The Lego Movie: The Special Special Edition ($19.99), featuring a bonus Blu-ray disc with more than two hours of new special features, including a commentary, deleted scenes, "How It Should Have Ended" clips and more. All the new bonus features are also available digitally on iTunes Extras and Vudu.
Target's 'Pixels' Blu-ray covers
Sony Pictures' video game comedy Pixels came with special box art at Target and Best Buy.
Target skipped offering the 3D Blu-ray comedy of the Adam Sandler starrer, instead offering a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack with a choice of lenticular covers based on different video game characters.
Best Buy offered the Pixels Blu-ray with a metal case and Pac-Man box art, the same basic art that Target offered in its Pac-Man lenticular.
Walmart tied Pixels to a promotion offering 50% off select movies at the Vudu streaming service.
Walmart also offered a gift set for Universal's Barbie & Her Sisters in The Great Puppy Adventure DVD with a plush puppy.
Among the latest preorders, Best Buy offered Paramount's Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation with a steelbook case for $19.99, and the 3D version of Marvel's Ant-Man with a steelbook case designed to look like a computer processor for $29.99 with a $5 deposit.