A lack of major new releases combined with continued interest in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises in theaters pushed the first two films in the director’s Batman trilogy, Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, into the top two spots on the Nielsen VideoScan First Alert Sales Chart for the week ended July 29.
For Begins, the result represents a remarkable return to the top spot for a title that has been on the market for almost seven years. Begins debuted on DVD Oct. 18, 2005, and spent two weeks atop the sales charts. It rose back to No. 2 in July 2008 after its Blu-ray debut and in advance of The Dark Knight opening in theaters.
Both of Nolan’s Batman titles showed strong chart performances in the weeks leading up to the release of Rises, hitting No. 2 and No. 3 the previous week, on the heels of an effort by Warner Home Video to re-promote the titles through exclusive editions offered at different retail chains.
In addition to First Alert, which tracks overall disc sales, the two Batman titles also topped VideoScan’s dedicated Blu-ray Disc sales chart for a second consecutive week, with Begins once again at No. 1. Each film sold 70% of its copies in the high-def format.
Begins, which outsold Dark Knight by about 14% on both charts, is likely getting a boost from Batman fans who already own Dark Knight on disc but may not have been as familiar with the first film in the series, as its theatrical gross was less than half that of the sequel.
The previous week’s overall top seller, Fox’s The Three Stooges, dropped to No. 3. The highest-ranking new release, at No. 10, was Universal’s Silent House, a thriller that grossed just less than $13 million in U.S. theaters.
Paramount’s Star Trek: The Next Generation — Season One Blu-ray edition from CBS Home Entertainment debuted at No. 4 on the Blu-ray chart, which translated to No. 11 on the overall disc sales chart, an excellent result for a pricier BD-only re-release of a 25-year-old TV show.
On Home Media Magazine’s weekly rental chart, Fox’s Mirror Mirror rose to the top spot after ending its 28-day kiosk embargo. The previous No. 1, Sony Pictures’ Lockout, dropped to No. 2, with Sony’s 21 Jump Street holding steady at No. 3.