'Hobbit' Dominates Blu-ray, DVD Charts

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Warner Home Video easily snagged the top spot on both national home video sales charts the week ending March 24 with New Line’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.

The fantasy flick, which earned $302.7 million in U.S. theaters and was directed by Lord of the Rings helmer Peter Jackson, easily outsold several other high-profile theatrical features that also bowed on disc the same week.

Universal Studios’s Les Miserables debuted at No. 2 on the Nielsen VideoScan First Alert sales chart, which tracks overall disc sales, as well as on Nielsen’s dedicated Blu-ray Disc sales chart.

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Bowing at No. 3, also on both charts, was Sony Pictures’ Zero Dark Thirty.

Demand was high for all three titles, but Hobbit was clearly the cream of the crop. Nielsen figures show Les Miserables sold just 33.8% as many units as Hobbit, while Zero Dark Thirty trailed with 21.4%. (To be fair, Les Mis came out on a Friday, so it didn’t have a full week of sales in the tracking period.)

The trio of new releases bumped the prior week’s top seller, DreamWorks’ Rise of the Guardians, to No. 4.

It is interesting to note that Blu-ray Disc accounted for the majority of unit sales for all three of the new releases. The Hobbit generated 56% of its total unit sales from Blu-ray Disc; Les Miserables, 54%; and Zero Dark Thirty, 53%.

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On Home Media Magazine’s video rental chart for the week, Zero Dark Thirty bowed at No. 1, with the two other top-selling new releases not yet available at all rental outlets. The No. 2 spot went to Warner’s Argo, which only now came off its holdback from Netflix and Redbox.

MGM’s Skyfall, the prior week’s top rental, slipped to No. 3.