5 interesting things about last week’s Home Entertainment sales chart

Wednesday February 23rd 2011

I recently acquired a copy of last week’s UK DVD and Blu-ray sales chart and some of the info contained within is truly incredible. Look beyond the obvious (The Social Network and Red inevitably topped the chart with over 100,000 sales each) and there are all sorts of amazing gems hidden in the catalogue numbers and variance statistics. Here are five…

Blu-ray only accounts for 5% of total chart sales
Sure, it might make a sizable dent in the big hitters, accounting for 20-30% of titles like Buried and The Town, but at the lower end of the chart Blu-ray barely gets a look in, while decade-old films like Billy Elliot and Big Daddy are shifting DVDs in the thousands. Genre makes a big difference too, with romantic comedy Marley & Me selling over 14,000 DVDs and just 11 Blu-rays.

Blu-ray never outsells DVD
When given a choice of format, it seems customers still aren’t ready to fully get on board with Blu-ray.
Even the most popular Blu-ray titles (Bambi, Inception, Kick-Ass) sold vastly more copies on ‘the other format’. Only two movies managed to get their Blu-ray sales over 30%: Buried and Avatar, the latter of which came in at 200 on the DVD chart and 8 on the Blu-ray chart.

3 HD-DVDs were purchased
Despite being discontinued almost three years ago in favour of Blu-ray, three HD-DVDs were bought with actual money from actual shops last week.
Bizarrely, two of them were Hot Fuzz (the other was Miami Vice). Other formats still making appearances include VHS (13 sales – mostly Disney) and UMD (a whopping 38, with The Hangover and Jumanji doing particularly well).

Valentine’s Day did wonders for rom-coms
Romantic films shot into the chart two weeks ago as anxious boyfriends began bulk buying Eat Pray Love and Marley & Me.
(I Spit On Your Grave also made the Top 10 – each to their own etc.). Sales dropped off after the 14th, but that didn’t stop Worst Film Of All Time contender Valentine’s Day from maintaining a Top 5 position in last week’s chart.

In the end, stamina pays off
Despite new titles dominating the top end of the chart with big first-week sales, it’s older films that sit in the lower regions quietly accumulating massive totals. Mamma Mia (82nd in last week’s sales) has the biggest cumulative total with over 5 million sales, while motley crew Hot Fuzz, The Shawshank Redemption, Gladiator and Grease round off the top five.