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Schwarzenegger Evicts <I>Resident Evil</I> At Rental

8 Aug, 2002 By: Melinda Saccone


Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment's Resident Evil nudged out Warner Home Video's Collateral Damage at the sales counter for the week, but Arnold Schwarzenegger did more Damage at rental.

Resident Evil was the overall top seller for the week ended Aug. 4 and the No. 1 DVD choice, according to Nielsen VideoScan First Alert data. Buena Vista Home Entertainment's Tarzan & Jane finished third in overall sales for the week (behind Evil and Damage ) and snagged the top berth in cassette sales.

Combined VHS and DVD rentals registered $174.6 million for the week ended Aug. 4. A strong slate of new releases bolstered rentals, however it wasn't enough to equal spending in the comparable week of 2001, which tallied $198.5 million.

Four new releases entered in the top 25 rentals chart for the week, with three of the newbies finding a spot in the top 10.

Top rental Collateral Damage earned $13.99 million in combined VHS and DVD revenue in its first five days of release. Universal Studios Home Video's Dragonfly debuted at No. 4 on the chart, earning $9.37 million in its first five days of release. K-9: P.I., also from Universal, debuted at No. 22 with $1.16 million. Resident Evil debuted at No. 7 on the rental chart, earning $7.12 million in combined VHS and DVD rental revenue.

Rental spending continues to lose ground compared to 2001.

So far this year, consumers have spent $5.3 billion at the rental counter -- down 6.2 percent from the comparable period last year.

DVD rentals continue to post gains. Consumers have spent $1.66 billion renting the format so far this year -- up 151.8 percent from the $657.2 million spent at this time last year.

But DVD rental gains have not made up for a VHS rental shortfall. VHS rentals declined 40.8 percent from the comparable period last year. Cassette rentals tallied $3.65 billion through the week ended Aug. 4.

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