'Mermaid' Floats to No. 14 Sep, 2008 By: Thomas K. Arnold
The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Beginning
Hollywood’s gamble with movies made directly for home video release continues to pay off — big time.
Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment topped the national sales chart the week ended Aug. 31 with the direct-to-video prequel The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Beginning, even though the film was up against the $80 million theatrical hit What Happens in Vegas.
Vegas, from 20th Century Fox, did debut at No. 2 on the Nielsen VideoScan First Alert sales chart, but it sold only about 60% as many copies as Mermaid.
The success of Mermaid comes in the wake of several other strong sales showings by DTV titles, including Universal Studios’ The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior, which debuted at No. 4 on the sales chart the previous week after selling more than 1 million DVDs and Blu-ray Discs its first six days in stores.
Another nontheatrical release, the season-two set of the TV series “Heroes,” from Universal, bowed at No. 3 on the home video sales chart for the week ended Aug. 31. Disney’s new collector’s edition of Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas debuted at No. 4, while the previous week’s top seller, Camp Rock, slipped to No. 5.On Home Media Magazine’s video rental chart for the week, What Happens in Vegas debuted at No. 1, bumping the previous weeks’ top renter, 20th Century Fox’s Street Kings, to No. 2.
On the Blu-ray Disc chart, the sales crown went to The Nightmare Before Christmas, with season two of “Heroes” a strong No. 2 and Vegas at No. 3.