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Blu-ray Sales: Harry Potter Powers It's Way to the Top

November 30th, 2011

The Harry Potter franchise held three of the top four spots on this week's Blu-ray sales chart with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 earning top spot with 1.29 million units / $28.83 million during its first full week of release for totals 3.40 million units / $76.27 million. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1 grabbed second place with 137,000 units / $1.78 million. It remained in first place for the year, barely, with 3.50 million units / $74.37 million. It's successor will overtake it by next week. Cars 2 was in a virtual tie for second place with 137,000 units / $4.10 million for the week and 2.19 million units / $56.10 million after three. The Harry Potter: Box Set climbed into fourth place with 132,000 units / $10.52 million for the week and 226,000 units / $18.08 million after two. It is clearly the most popular franchise on Blu-ray. Captain America: The First Avenger returned to the top five with 110,000 units / $2.21 million for the week for totals of 2.10 million units / $53.34 million after a month of release. The film has sold almost twice as many Blu-rays as it has DVDs.

The best new release was the 50th Anniversary Edition of West Side Story, which sold 89,000 units / $2.09 million earning eighth place in the process. Dragons: Gift of the Night Fury was right behind in ninth place with 80,000 units sold earning $1.53 million in opening week sales. I was a little surprised this release even came out on Blu-ray, but with an opening week Blu-ray ratio of 42%, it was clearly the right choice. Larry Crowne was way back in 21st place with 24,000 units / $464,000. Its opening week Blu-ray ratio was just 19%, but as a drama aimed at a more mature target audience, this is not terribly surprising.

One final note, Firefly: The Complete Series earned 11th place with 58,000 units / $2.13 million. There's no logical reason for it to have sold this well at this point in its run.

Before we get into this week's overall Blu-ray market, we have to talk about last week's numbers. Like the the monthly job numbers, numbers tend to be revised and newer information comes in. Usually these revisions are quite small compared to the overall size of the market. This was not the case this week, as overall sales were 20% less than first reported. This means the record-breaking week wasn't actually record-breaking. It was still the second best week in the history of the format, so there's still reason to celebrate.

The overall Blu-ray market this week was a little lower than last, but that's not surprising, as the selection of new releases was very weak. Overall sales were down 30% in terms of units and 25% in terms of dollars. However, compared to last year, Blu-ray sales were up 25% / 29% . Again, DVD sales held better growth on a week-to-week basis, which caused the overall Blu-ray ratio to dip even further. It still had 50% of total revenue, but its share of unit sales dropped to 38%.

Next week should be a little better with the debut of Super 8, among others. Last year there were three films that sold more than 1 million DVD and I don't think that will happen this year. DVD sales will definitely drop year-over-year, but hopefully the same won't happen with Blu-ray.


Filed under: Video Sales, West Side Story, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I, Cars 2, Captain America: The First Avenger, Larry Crowne, Super 8, Dragons: Gift of the Night Fury