- Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment’s “Spider-Man” swung into action Friday on rental and retail shelves, selling an estimated 7 million combined VHS and DVD units its first day out and capturing the first-day-sales record, which had been held by Disney/Pixar’s “Monsters, Inc.” with 4.5 million total units sold to consumers.
CTHE’s top executives credited the record-breaking sales to an unprecedented $100 million-plus promotional campaign, with more than $40 million dedicated to hard media, and to the popularity of the movie franchise, which set boxoffice records in its opening weekend and has totaled more than $800 million worldwide.
….”This is the biggest- and fastest-selling title, not only theatrically but now in the home-video market,” Feingold said. “This is clearly the biggest film of the weekend, and we believe that within weeks we will be approaching ‘The Lion King’ in terms of total sales.”
The Walt Disney Co.’s “Lion King” set the home video industry benchmark during the mid-1990s — before the advent of DVD — when it topped out at approximately 32 million VHS units sold through to consumers.
Feingold said “Spider-Man” is on track to sell more than 11 million combined VHS and DVD units during its first three days of release, generating an estimated $190 million in gross retail revenue and breaking the three-day home video sales record of 9 million combined units sold to consumers recently set by DreamWorks Home Entertainment’s “Shrek,” the only title besides Spidey to be released on a Friday.
The video industry’s traditional Tuesday release of most video titles is done for logistical reasons, allowing time for retailers to gear up for weekend sales. While Feingold admitted that some retailers where not pleased by the Friday release strategy, others were very happy with it.
“From a marketing standpoint, we wanted to have “Spider-Man” out there on Halloween night, utilizing midnight madness-type promotions at many retail outlets and providing four extra days of marketing to make it the biggest weekend event of the quarter and, therefore, the year,” Feingold said.