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Consumers Still Go 'Wild,' Get 'Lucky'

28 Sep, 2006 By: Thomas K. Arnold

With studios holding on to their big theatricals for fourth-quarter release, the third quarter is ending with a whimper. The lack of any strong DVD releases kept both Buena Vista Home Entertainment's The Wild and Genius Products' Lucky Number Slevin in the top spots on the national DVD sales and rental charts, respectively, for the week ended Sept. 24.

Buena Vista's Stick It, at nearly $27 million the highest-powered theatrical to hit stores Sept. 19, debuted at No. 2 on VideoScan's First Alert sales chart* and No. 6 on Home Media Retailing's video rental chart.

But the real winner was Universal Studios' Barbie in the 12 Dancing Princesses, the first direct-to-video “Barbie” release since Universal took over the line from Lionsgate.

The feature-length animated title bowed at No. 3 on First Alert, with first-week sales pegged by the studio at nearly 500,000 units, 15% more than the previous princess-themed installment in the franchise. Universal thus “defied the traditional sales trend,” in which successive titles in a franchise taper off, noted Universal Studios Home Entertainment president Craig Kornblau.

Other notable newcomers with strong first-week showings on the DVD sales front are Warner's Gilmore Girls: The Complete Sixth Season, which bowed at No. 4; Buena Vista's $23 million horror theatrical Stay Alive, which debuted at No. 5; Paramount's special edition of Grease, which entered First Alert at No. 7; and Warner's Scooby-Doo in Pirates Ahoy!, checking in at No. 9.

*Preliminary data only. One key retailer was unable to report its sales data by press time.

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