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2005 In Review Part 2: FEBRUARY 2005

1 Jan, 2006 By: Thomas K. Arnold

DreamWorks' Shark Tale DVD sold 6 million units its first week in stores, setting a new February record.

Stung by Movie Gallery's bid to buy Hollywood Entertainment Corp., Blockbuster Inc. ups its offering in a hostile takeover attempt. The bid subsequently is rejected by a special committee of Hollywood shareholders, who question whether federal regulators would approve such a union of the country's No. 1 and No. 2 video rental chains.

Blockbuster's decision to stop charging late fees leads to trouble. Attorneys general in at least 35 states investigate allegedly deceptive business practices stemming from the “restocking fees” the chain charges for videos that are brought back late.

DreamWorks Home Entertainment's Shark Tale DVD sets a new record for a February release, selling 6 million units its first week in stores.

Trans World Entertainment is countering a prolonged slump in the music industry by announcing plans to open movie-only and game-only stores. Four stores already are being tested in various markets around the country, and chain CEO Robert Higgins tells analysts he's so pleased with early results that “it probably is a format that we will be expanding.”

A new study from The NPD Group shows the online rental market, dominated by Netflix and Blockbuster Online, doubled in the fourth quarter of 2004 from the previous year's Q4. Online rentals now account for 15 percent of the overall rental market.

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