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<I>Harry Potter</i> Generates Magical Sales

18 Apr, 2003 By: Brett Sporich

The second installment of the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, worked its magic on the home video front, selling more than 6 million VHS and DVD combined units nationwide in its first day in release, according to several industry sources.

While Warner Home Video executives declined comment on sales of the latest "Potter" release, when taking into account that the title was released Friday simultaneously in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, Spain and Scandinavia, combined VHS and DVD sales are estimated to have topped 11 million units by Sunday, according to several industry sources.

Nevertheless, Potter is considered an evergreen title that will continue to build up steam over time, unlike most other home video releases that do the vast majority of sales during their first few weeks on store shelves, several retail sources said.

This was the first Friday release for a "Potter" title, making logistics at retail more complicated than the industry standard of a typical Tuesday release date.

Since DreamWorks Home Entertainment set the precedent of releasing a major title on a Friday with "Shrek," several studios have followed suit, especially when the title is marketed for sale rather than rental as the "Potter" series has been.

The home video release of the second "Potter" movie, which earned $260 million at the box office, topped both Nielsen VideoScan's First Alert DVD and VHS sales charts during its first three days in release and came in at No. 3 on Video Store Magazine's weekly rental chart, earning an estimated $7.96 million in gross domestic rental revenue during its first three days on rental shelves.

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