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‘Everest’ hits peak for large-format vid sales

Pic outpaces expectations

MacGillivray Freeman Films’ large-format pic “Everest” has exceeded Miramax’s expectations in homevideo sales since its March release.

“We’re very pleased with the initial release and the response to the film,” said Kevin Kasha, exec VP of Miramax Home Entertainment, which acquired worldwide homevideo rights to the pic last December (Daily Variety, Dec. 2, 1998).

Sources said the $19.99 video has sold more than 200,000 units since it hit video stores March 30, outstripping other large-format film video sales.

Some 20,000 copies were sold during the year “Everest” was on sale at Imax theater gift stores — the traditional and limited market for large-format videos — before Miramax began distribution.

By comparison, a MacGillivray Freeman Films spokesperson said its previous film, “The Living Sea,” sold 7,000 video copies in one year in theater gift shops, although it didn’t play on as many screens as “Everest.”

“Everest” has grossed $621,000 in its first five weeks of release as a video rental, according to the Video Software Dealers Association. The video opened at No. 88 in the chart and fell to 132.

Kasha said “Everest” had translated well to video, despite being intended for a screen eight stories tall.

Miramax is assembling for DVD an “Everest” collector’s edition, including footage of the film’s making, which should be available this summer.

MacGillivray Freeman is still distributing the film to giant screen theaters, where it has accumulated a worldwide box office gross of almost $85 million.

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