‘Handmaid’s Tale’ Still No. 1 on Digital Originals Chart, While ‘Orange is the New Black’ Sees Demand Double

The arrival of the highly anticipated finale of Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” on July 11 meant the dystopian drama series had no trouble staying at the top of the digital originals chart the week ended July 14, with 25% higher demand compared to last week, according to Parrot Analytics data.

“The Handmaid’s Tale” also surged up to fourth place (from No. 10) on the overall TV series chart.

Parrot uses a proprietary metric called Demand Expressions, which measures global demand for TV content through a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites.

The Hulu series is not the only digital original series to post a significant gain in demand, according to Parrot Analytics. Netflix’s “Orange is the New Black” saw its demand more than double as trailers arrived promoting the July 27 debut of Season 6 – propelling the women’s prison drama to the No. 2 spot on the digital originals chart, up from No. 7.

New to the digital originals top 10 chart is Hulu’s “Castle Rock,” which debuted at No. 6.  The Stephen King-based horror series doesn’t arrive on the OTT channel until July 25, but interest in the show is clearly mounting, Parrot Analytics data shows.

Netflix’s “Stranger Things” also is back on the chart, as fans discuss the recent teases about Season 3. Fan engagement is also keeping “Sense8” in high demand: The show remains at No. 5 on the digital originals chart, even after the two-hour finale in June, as fans continue to campaign for Netflix to “un-cancel” the sci-fi title.

The controversial teen suicide drama “13 Reasons Why” swapped places with “Marvel’s Luke Cage,” finishing the week at No. 3 from No. 4 the prior week.

Media Play News has teamed with Parrot Analytics to provide readers with a weekly top 10 of the most popular digital original TV series in the United States, based on the firm’s  proprietary metric called Demand Expressions, which measures global demand for TV content through a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites.

‘A Quiet Place’ Debuts at No. 1 on Redbox Charts

Paramount Pictures’ A Quiet Place, the surprise horror hit that gave the studio one of its first big theatrical wins in several years, debuted at No. 1 on both Redbox charts the week ended July 16.

The film, which earned nearly $188 million in U.S. theaters and has a 95% Rotten Tomatoes rating, topped both Redbox’s kiosk rental chart, which tracks DVD and Blu-ray Disc rentals, and the Redbox On Demand chart, which tracks digital purchases and rentals.

Universal Studios’ Blockers, a comedy about a trio of parents who try to stop their daughters from losing their virginity on prom night, slipped to No. 2 on both Redbox charts after a No. 1 debut the prior week.

After two weeks in stores, Tyler Perry’s Acrimony, from Lionsgate, is still in high demand, remaining at No. 3 on the kiosk disc rental chart and slipping one notch to No. 3 on the Redbox On Demand digital chart.

Rounding out the top five on the disc rental chart were Warner’s Tomb Raider reboot at No. 4 and Lionsgate’s made-for-video sequel Escape Plan 2 at No. 5.

On the digital chart, Warner’s Game Night remained at No. 4 while  Daddy’s Home surged back up to No. 5.

Three new releases also debuted in the top 10 on the kiosk chart: Future World (No. 6) and Chappaquiddick (No. 7), both from Lionsgate, and 211 (No. 8) from Distribution Solutions.

Inspired by real-life events, 211 is the story of a good cop and his civilian passenger who are caught in the midst of a bank heist.

 

Top DVD and Blu-ray Disc Rentals, Redbox Kiosks, Week Ending July 16

  1. A Quiet Place (new)
  2. Blockers
  3. Tyler Perry’s Acrimony
  4. Tomb Raider (2018)
  5. Escape Plan 2 – Double Feature
  6. Future World
  7. Chappaquiddick
  8. 211
  9. Pacific Rim: Uprising
  10. Sherlock Gnomes

 

Top Digital, Redbox On Demand, Week Ending July 16

  1. A Quiet Place (new)
  2. Blockers
  3. Tyler Perry’s Acrimony
  4. Game Night
  5. Daddy’s Home
  6. Chappaquiddick
  7. Tomb Raider (2018)
  8. Death Wish (2018)
  9. I Can Only Imagine
  10. Pacific Rim: Uprising

 

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Buy or rent Redbox On Demand movies

 

Walmart Reportedly Eyes Streaming Service of Its Own

The Walt Disney Co. may not be alone in its quest to launch a subscription streaming service to compete with Netflix, Amazon and Hulu.

Walmart reportedly is considering a proprietary over-the-top (OTT) video service featuring both subscription and ad-supported business models.

Walmart, which currently owns and operates Vudu.com, a transactional VOD and digital sales platform, could add the SVOD service – priced at $8 per month – according to The Information, which cited sources familiar with the situation.

A Walmart representative was not immediately available for comment.

Netflix last October raised its monthly fee to $10.99 for new subscribers from $9.99. And in January, Amazon spiked its monthly subscription charge for Prime by nearly 20%, to $12.99 from $10.99.

Hulu charges $7.99 for a monthly plan with commercials or $11.99 a month commercial-free.

Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart is no stranger to home entertainment, having long dominated packaged media sales.

In 2012, with studio support, Walmart launched a disc-to-digital service at stores that enabled consumers to convert their DVD and Blu-ray Disc movies into digital files for fee. The retailer expanded the service a year later through Vudu enabling users to convert a DVD ($2) or Blu-ray ($5) to a digital file from their home.

Taking on Netflix, Prime Video and Hulu, which collectively spend tens of billions of dollars a year licensing third-party and original content, would require a major financial commitment from Walmart.

While the retailer has the requisite fiscal deep pocket to fund a SVOD service, does it have the will?

Redbox and Verizon in 2014 shuttered Redbox Instant, a hybrid disc/SVOD service that attempted to take on Netflix featuring 5,000 titles. It lasted just 18 months.

“The service had not been as successful as either partner hoped it would be,” a Verizon spokesperson said in 2014. “We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause our customers.”

Michael Pachter, media analyst with Wedbush Securities, estimated Redbox Instant generated about 900,000 subscribers before calling it quits.

In August 2017, Vudu arrived on Apple TV. The new app allows users to watch the movies and TV shows saved to their Vudu libraries, but like its iOS counterpart, the Apple TV version of Vudu doesn’t allow them to rent or buy videos through the app directly. Instead, they have to make a purchase through the browser or another device first.

Walmart as of Jan. 31, 2018, had 11,718 stores and clubs in 28 countries, operating under 59 different names. Of those stores, 4,761 are in the United States, accounting for more than 62% of total sales.

Walmart in May said U.S. comp-store sales were up 2.1% from the prior year, while total revenue for the quarter rose 4.4% to $122.7 billion.

‘Vietnam War’ Doc a Double Winner at EMA’s Independent Studio Home Entertainment Awards

Well Go USA’s IP Man 3 won the Hall of Fame Award at the seventh annual Los Angeles Entertainment Summit (LAES) July 17 in Hollywood.

The 2015 Hong Kong biographical martial arts film, which has a 78% favorable Rotten Tomatoes score, was honored for its consistent performance since release three years ago.

The honor was presented at the 2018 Independent Studio Home Entertainment Awards, part of the annual conference, which this year is focused on indie studios and content.

The conference is produced by the Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA).

PBS Distribution’s The Vietnam War: A Film by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick picked up two awards, Sellthrough Title of the Year from an Independent Studio and Documentary Title of the Year from an Independent Studio.

Loving Vincent, from Cinedigm and Good Deed Entertainment, was honored as the Rental Title of the Year from an Independent Studio.

And California Typewriter, from Gravitas Ventures, was named Original/Limited Release Title of the Year from an Independent Studio.

PBS Distribution’s Andrea Downing, who accepted the award for The Vietnam War, said the filmmakers dealt with a “very complicated topic” and “really tried to tell the story from multiple perspectives.”

The documentary, which runs 18 hours, recently launched on Netflix, she said.

‘Fraggle Rock’ Complete Series to Make Blu-ray Disc Debut in Time for 35th Anniversary

In time for its 35th anniversary, the classic children’s series “Fraggle Rock” will be released in its entirety on Blu-ray Disc Sept. 25 by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

Described by its creator, the late Jim Henson, as “a high-energy, raucous musical romp,” “Fraggle Rock” stars a cast of puppet creatures called Fraggles, quirky cave-dwellers who live in an underground world alongside their industrious green neighbors, the Doozers, and a family of enormous Gorgs. The series follows their adventures and features a unique mix of music from all genres including folk, blues, gospel, country and rock, all while embracing themes of friendship, tolerance, diversity and caring for the planet.

All 96 episodes in the 12-disc set from the show’s four seasons – which were broadcast on HBO from January 1983 to March 1987 – are fully remastered in high definition and presented with lossless audio on Blu-ray Disc. The set also is available in special limited edition “scrapbook” packaging, featuring rare behind the scenes photos and an introduction from Uncle Travelling Matt.

“Fraggle Rock: The Complete Series” offers hours of bonus content on Blu-ray, including the all-new “Fraggle Music Celebration,” with sing-alongs for every episode (100 songs). Also newly included on the Blu-ray Disc set is a rare personal glimpse behind the curtain with Henson, plus a 1993 throwback segment from “The Today Show” featuring Uncle Travelling Matt, along with more than eight hours of archival special features, including interviews with the cast and crew, featurettes, and assorted promos.

Also included is the complete “Fraggle Rock: The Animated Series,” a 13-episode spinoff that aired Saturday mornings on NBC for one season in 1987. Reruns were shown on The Disney Channel from 1990 to 1995.

“Fraggle Rock: The Complete Series” also will be available separately on digital and DVD, along with “Fraggle Rock: The Complete Animated Series.”

‘Blockers’ Tops at Redbox; ‘Acrimony,’ from Tyler Perry, Still Going Strong

Universal Pictures’ Blockers, a comedy about a trio of parents who try to stop their daughters from losing their virginity on prom night, debuted at No. 1 on both Redbox charts the week ended July 9.

The film, which earned just under $60 million in U.S. theaters, topped both Redbox’s kiosk rental chart, which tracks DVD and Blu-ray Disc rentals, and the Redbox On Demand chart, which tracks digital purchases and rentals.

The film stars Leslie Mann, Ike Barinholtz, and John Cena as the parents and Kathryn Newton, Geraldine Viswanathan, and Gideon Adlon as the daughters.

Still going strong on both charts: Tyler Perry’s Acrimony, from Lionsgate, which was No. 3 on the kiosk chart and No. 2 on the Redbox on Demand chart. A week earlier, the film debuted at No. 1 on the Redbox On Demand digital chart and No. 2 on the kiosk disc rental chart.

The Tomb Raider reboot, from Warner Bros., slipped to No. 2 on the disc rental chart and No. 3 on the digital chart.

Rounding out the top five on the disc rental chart were Lionsgate’s made-for-video sequel Escape Plan 2 at No. 4 and Universal Pictures’ Pacific Rim: Uprising at No. 5.

On the digital chart, Warner’s Game Night was No. 4 and Pacific Rim: Uprising finished the week at No. 5.

 

Top DVD and Blu-ray Disc Rentals, Redbox Kiosks, Week Ending July 9

  1. Blockers (new)
  2. Tomb Raider (2018)
  3. Tyler Perry’s Acrimony (new)
  4. Escape Plan 2 – Double Feature
  5. Pacific Rim: Uprising
  6. I Can Only Imagine
  7. Game Night
  8. Sherlock Gnomes
  9. Death Wish (2018)
  10. Beirut

 

Top Digital, Redbox On Demand, Week Ending July 9

  1. Blockers (new)
  2. Tyler Perry’s Acrimony
  3. Tomb Raider (2018)
  4. Game Night
  5. Pacific Rim: Uprising
  6. I Can Only Imagine
  7. Death Wish (2018)
  8. Sicario
  9. Red Sparrow
  10. The Greatest Showman

 

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Buy or rent Redbox On Demand movies

On Eve of Explosive Finale, ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ Takes Top Spot on Digital Originals Chart

With fans eager for the explosive finale on July 11, demand for Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” rose 8% in the week ended July 7, enough to push the dystopian drama into the No. 1 spot on the digital originals chart, according to Parrot Analytics data.

Parrot uses a proprietary metric called Demand Expressions, which measures global demand for TV content through a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites.

“The Handmaid’s Tale” bumped last week’s top digital original, “Marvel’s Luke Cage,” down to No. 3.

“Marvel’s Luke Cage,” based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name, shot to No.1 the prior week with a 63% surge in demand triggered by the June 22 debut of Season 2. Since then, demand only slipped less than 9%.

Finishing at No. 2 on the digital originals chart the week ended July 7 was Netflix’s “Queer Eye,” up from No. 4 the previous week – even though demand was essentially flat.

The controversial teen drama “13 Reasons Why” slipped one spot to No. 4, with a nearly 26% drop in demand from the prior week suggesting binge viewers are finishing up their Season 2 marathons.

All 13 episodes in Season 2 were released on Netflix on May 18. The series immediately shot to No. 1 on the digital originals chart and remained in the top spot for five consecutive weeks.

Media Play News has teamed with Parrot Analytics to provide readers with a weekly top 10 of the most popular digital original TV series in the United States, based on the firm’s  proprietary metric called Demand Expressions, which measures global demand for TV content through a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites.

Toys ‘R’ Us Shutters Last of Its Stores

Toys ‘ R’ Us is officially history.

The struggling toy chain – once a significant player in the DVD/Blu-ray Disc and video game sellthrough market – closed the last of its U.S. stores last week.

A sign taped to the inside of the glass door to a now-empty Toys ‘R’ Us store in Oceanside, Calif., reads, “Thanks for the memories. We are now CLOSED. Don’t ever grow up. ALWAYS be a Toys ‘R’ Us Kid.

Just three months ago, in April, the same store still had plenty of discounted toys on the shelves – and customers in the aisles, looking for a bargain.

But the movie and video game department – set off in a corner, store-within-a-store style – was nearly bare.

The video game section, in particular, was virtually depleted, with catalog games for the big three consoles priced at 15% off the list price.

Discs were even more deeply discounted, at 20% off. But the selection was a shadow of what it used to be, and the rack was about half empty.

All that was left were budget cartoons and family movies as well as a smattering of marquee titles, including Walt Disney combo packs of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and the live-action Beauty and the Beast, Universal Pictures’ The Fate of the Furious, and Warner’s Justice League.

Toys ‘R’ Us was founded by Charles Lazarus in 1957, nine years after he launched a children’s furniture store, to which he gradually added more and more toys. Toys ‘R’ Us subsequently expanded into a chain and ultimately operated around 800 stores in the United States and roughly the same number abroad.

The chain was so successful that it birthed sister chains Babies ‘R’ Us and Kids ‘R’ Us. In 2001, Toys ‘R’ Us opened a 110,000-square-foot flagship store in New York’s Times Square at a cost of $35 million.

But with the rise of discount chains like Walmart and Target Stores, with their sizeable toy departments, toy specialists found it increasingly hard to compete. The rise of the Internet and the surge in e-commerce made things even more difficult. K·B Toys and FAO Schwarz were among the casualties (although Toys ‘R’ Us picked up both chains’ remains), while Toys ‘R’ Us limped along, closing stores and negotiating with toy makers for better deals.

A $7.5 billion leveraged buyout in 2005 by Bain Capital, KKR & Co. and Vornado Realty Trust loaded Toys ‘R’ Us with debt, weakening the chain’s position even further.

After years of trying to find a buyer, the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the United States on Sept. 18, 2017, and has also filed for bankruptcy protection in Canada.

On March 14, 2018, Toys ‘R’ Us announced that all of its stores in the United Kingdom would close. The next day, it was announced that the U.S. operations of Toys ‘R’ Us were going out of business as well and all 735 of its remaining U.S. locations would be shuttered.

 

‘Marvel’s Luke Cage’ Bumps ’13 Reasons Why’ From Top Spot on Digital Originals Chart, Parrot Says

In the week leading up to Independence Day, Marvel’s “Luke Cage” saw a significant gain in demand, according to Parrot Analytics data.

The action series shot up to No. 1 on the digital originals chart from No. 5 the prior week, with a 63% gain in demand triggered by the June 22 debut of Season 2.

Parrot uses a proprietary metric called Demand Expressions, which measures global demand for TV content through a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites.

“Marvel’s Luke Cage” was created for Netflix by Cheo Hodari Coker and is based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name, an ex-con with superhuman. It is set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe(MCU) and is the third in a series of shows that culminate with the crossover miniseries “The Defenders”. “Marvel’s Luke Cage” is produced by Marvel Television in association with ABC Studios.

“Luke Cage” also had coattails, with companion series “Marvel’s Daredevil” bowing in the top 10 at No. 9 (from No. 13 the prior week).

Netflix’s “Queer Eye” and Amazon’s “Goliath”  generated steady demand due to new episodes premiering in June; “Queer Eye” was almost twice as popular as “Goliath”. Amazon’s legal drama had been waiting for new episodes since 2016. All of that anticipation finally paid off when Season 2 premiered on June 15. Amazon has yet to renew the drama for a third season, for which Billy Bob Thornton won a Golden Globe in 2017.

“Queer Eye” rose to No. 4 on the digital originals chart from No. 6 the prior week, with a 57% gain in demand.

“Goliath” rose to No. 8 from No. 10, with a spike of just under 6%.

The controversial Netflix teen drama series “13 Reasons Why,” centered around the fallout from a teenage girl’s suicide, slipped to No. 3 after five weeks at No. 1. Demand was up a modest 2% from the prior week. The series shot to No. 1 when Season 2 debuted in mid-May.

Media Play News has teamed with Parrot Analytics to provide readers with a weekly top 10 of the most popular digital original TV series in the United States, based on the firm’s  proprietary metric called Demand Expressions, which measures global demand for TV content through a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites.

‘Acrimony,’ from Tyler Perry, Takes Top Spot on Redbox On Demand Digital Chart

Warner’s Tomb Raider was again the top disc rental at Redbox kiosks the week ended July 2, seeing more DVD and Blu-ray Disc rental activity than any other film.

But on Redbox’s On Demand chart, which tracks digital purchases and rentals, the reboot of the action-adventure film series ceded the top spot to Tyler Perry’s Acrimony, a new release from Lionsgate. Tomb Raider slipped to No. 2.

Tyler Perry’s Acrimony debuted at No. 2 on the Redbox kiosk chart, bumping Universal Pictures’ Pacific Rim: Uprising to No. 3. Uprising also was No. 3 on the On Demand chart.

Another new release, Lionsgate’s Escape Plan 2, debuted at No. 4 on the kiosk chart. The action sequel, released exclusively for the home market, has Sylvester Stallone and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson reprising their roles from the 2013 original, which earned $25.1 million in U.S. theaters. Redbox’s Escape Plan 2 DVD and Blu-ray Disc rental package comes with a copy of the first film.

Rounding out the top five on the kiosk chart was the faith-based I Can Only Imagine, another Lionsgate release, down from No. 3 the prior week.

On the On Demand digital chart, Warner’s Game Night remained at No. 4 while I Can Only Imagine also slipped to No. 5 from No. 3 the prior week.

 

Top DVD and Blu-ray Disc Rentals, Redbox Kiosks, Week Ending July 2

  1. Tomb Raider (2018)
  2. Tyler Perry’s Acrimony (new)
  3. Pacific Rim: Uprising
  4. Escape Plan 2 – Double Feature
  5. I Can Only Imagine
  6. Sherlock Gnomes
  7. Death Wish (2018)
  8. Game Night
  9. A Wrinkle in Time (2018)
  10. Black Panther

 

Top Digital, Redbox On Demand, Week Ending July 2

  1. Tyler Perry’s Acrimony (new)
  2. Tomb Raider (2018)
  3. Pacific Rim: Uprising
  4. Game Night
  5. I Can Only Imagine
  6. Death Wish (2018)
  7. Sicario
  8. Sherlock Gnomes
  9. Jurassic World
  10. Red Sparrow

 

Visit the Redbox website.

Buy or rent Redbox On Demand movies.