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‘Royale’ may break hi-def DVD record

Over 100,000 Blu-ray units have been shipped

“Casino Royale” is on its way to becoming the bestselling hi-def DVD to date.

Sony Pictures announced that the newest James Bond film’s Blu-ray disc has shipped more than 100,000 units in North America, a record for the format. Studio said the title has already sold more than 50,000 units. Sony also announced that “Casino Royale” set a record for the most hi-def DVD discs sold in one day.

Bestselling movie in the competing HD DVD format, “Batman Begins,” has sold 43,000 copies.

Sony initially shipped 50,000 Blu-ray copies of “Casino Royale” based on initial estimates when the title debuted March 13 and upped that number based on early sales.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment topper David Bishop attributed strong sales in large part to continued rollout of the Playstation 3. Though it’s lagging behind the Xbox 360 and Wii, PS3 sales are still putting the number of Blu-ray players well ahead of HD DVD.

Bishop said studio is counting on even bigger sales for “Spider-Man 3” this fall, the next tentpole expected to be popular with the gamer demo that will be available on Blu-ray only.

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