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Retailers Seeing Green With <i>Rouge</i> on Globe Boost

25 Jan, 2002 By: Joan Villa

For retailers, the offbeat musical Moulin Rouge emerged the big winner of the 59th annual Golden Globes since it was one of the few honorees available on video.

The 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment title has already been updated in television and print ads for its Golden Globe win as best motion picture, musical or comedy, and for star Nicole Kidman as best actress, said Fox VP Steven Feldstein. The film, from Australian director Baz Luhrmann, tallied $60 million at the box office and has performed so strongly at retail that Fox has taken reorders "since day two," Feldstein said.

"The performance of this movie continues to delight and astound us," he added. "We're looking at other ways of utilizing this Golden Globe win to make sure more people see Moulin Rouge on both video and DVD," including possible shelf talkers, header cards and box stickers.

Universal Studios' A Beautiful Mind took top honors for motion picture, drama, and best actor for star Russell Crowe's portrayal of Nobel Prize-winning mathematician John Nash, but the film's home video plans will not be announced until after the Academy Awards in March, a studio spokesman said. If the film garners further honors, the Ron Howard movie will play longer in theaters and not follow the typical six-month theater-to-video window.

Other winners are Sissy Spacek, best actress in a drama, for Miramax's In the Bedroom and Gene Hackman, best actor in a musical or comedy for Touchstone's The Royal Tenenbaums, both without specific video release dates but expected from Buena Vista Home Entertainment during the summer, according to a spokesman. USA's Gosford Park, new to theaters last month, won for director Robert Altman.

Cable channel HBO and its home video counterpart also won big in television categories for best comedy series and best actress for "Sex and the City" in its fourth season, best drama series for the new "Six Feet Under" and best miniseries or motion picture made for television for "Band of Brothers." Only "Sex and the City"'s first two seasons have been released on video.

"We haven't announced the third season yet but we're consistently releasing a season a year," a spokeswoman said. "We're always hopeful [the award] drives more people to the program on the network and on home video."

In fact, prepublicity from the awards has already bumped rentals at six-store TLA Video in Philadelphia, according to rental buyer David Bleiler, even though the chain doesn't typically separate the titles or identify winners in-store.

"Looking at our weekly figures, [Golden Globe nominees] Bridget Jones's Diary, Legally Blonde and Memento all returned to our top 10 for the week as far as new release rentals," he noted. After being on rental shelves for more than 15 weeks, he added, "there has to be a reason that they all increased in each store; it would have to be because of the coverage for the Golden Globes."

Bleiler said that generally the awards don't influence his buying, but for some customers it makes a difference in what they choose to rent, especially for TV movies or miniseries such as Buena Vista's Life With Judy Garland: Me and My Shadows, which won a best actress Golden Globe for Judy Davis, and arrives on video this week.

Moulin Rouge, he said, has been in the No. 1 rental slot at his chain for four weeks running, and previously viewed copies are selling fast.

"Between the [expected] Oscar nominations and a win or two, this will remain one of our hot-renting titles for at least four to six months," he predicted.

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