Potter homevid conjures $108 mil

Numbers rep first day sales, 6 million DVD, VHS units

Consumers spent more than $108 million to buy Warner Home Video’s “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” on its first day of release in the U.S., according to estimates by Video Business magazine.

Industry sources said the title sold 6 million DVD and VHS units on April 11, the first day it was in stores. “Chamber of Secrets” also earned $6.46 million at rental counters in its first three days, according to VSDA VidTrac.

“Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” the first film in the series, sold nearly 10 million DVD and VHS copies in the U.S. and Canada in its first week. “Sorcerer’s Stone” was released in May ahead of Memorial Day weekend.

The Potter price battle continued at mass merchants, though few were advertising prices in Sunday circulars. Circuit City advertised the title for $16.99. Amazon.com was selling the DVD, which ranked as a top seller throughout the week, for $17.86. The DVD has a $29.95 SRP.

“It’s hotter than a pistol,” said Ted Engen, president of Video Buyers Group, which represents 2,000-plus independent retailers. Engen said most of his member stores were selling the Potter DVD but wouldn’t make much money on it.

(Jennifer Netherby writes for Variety’s sister publication Video Business.)

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