‘Croods’ Sequel Cleans Up at Box Office Despite Multi-Platform Availability

NEWS ANALYSIS — The Universal/DreamWorks Animation sequel The Croods: A New Age had another notable weekend at the domestic box office, generating $520,000 in ticket sales through March 14, and bringing its global take above $158.6 million, including $54.3 million in the United States since its Thanksgiving weekend debut.

The tally was good enough to finish fifth among the week’s top theatrical titles — despite the movie being available across other distribution formats for weeks and months.

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Indeed, A New Age was No. 1 on the Top 10 list of combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc unit sales for February 2021, according to The NPD Group’s VideoScan tracking service. The title was released on disc Feb. 23 and led the weekly sales chart the final week of the month, drawing enough sales to clinch not only the month but also move into the top spot for the year so far.

That was not the title’s first foray into the retail space. The Croods: A New Age was made available Dec. 18 on premium VOD as part of Universal’s revised release strategy aimed at expediting theatrical movies to consumers during the pandemic and beyond. The title, which has topped sales at myriad digital platforms, including Vudu, FandangoNow, Google Play, Apple TV and Xfinity Store, among others, is also available at Redbox kiosks for rent at $1.80 for DVD and $2 for Blu-ray.

“This is our new normal,” Peter Levinsohn, vice chairman and chief distribution officer for Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, told the Los Angeles Times. “We may make the decision that certain films should have more than three weekends at the box office, but our new normal is that we’re going to be making our films available in the home sometime after that third weekend.”

Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Comscore, said the Croods: A New Age release strategy has proven that a “solid” family movie can be successful across multiple channels at the same time.

“Born out of a reaction to the pandemically challenged marketplace, [Croods 2 is] paying long-term financial dividends, while honoring the consumer’s choice of how best to view the movie with their families,” Dergarabedian said.

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