‘Aladdin’ Rides Magic Carpet to Top of September Sales Chart

Disney’s live-action remake of Aladdin was No. 1 on the top 10 list of combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc unit sales for September 2019 according to the NPD Group’s VideoScan tracking service.

The musical fantasy was released on disc Sept. 10.

Lionsgate’s action-sequel John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum, also released on disc Sept. 10, was the No. 2 seller for the month.

Sony Pictures’ Men in Black: International, released early in the month on Sept. 3, took No. 3 on the chart.

The superhero movie X-Men: Dark Phoenix, from 20th Century Fox, was No. 4 during the month.

Disney’s Avengers: Endgame, the previous month’s top title, dropped to No. 5 for the month.

Disney’s 1992 animated version of Aladdin jumped back onto the chart at No. 8 thanks to a new “Signature Collection” Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray edition released Sept. 10 to coincide with the new version.

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The list of the year’s top 10 disc sellers was unchanged from the previous month, with Avengers: Endgame maintaining its position as the top seller of 2019 so far.

According to NPD, the September 2019 top 10 by units sold were:

  1. Aladdin (2019) (Disney)
  2. John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum (Lionsgate)
  3. Men in Black: International (Sony Pictures)
  4. X-Men: Dark Phoenix (Fox)
  5. Avengers: Endgame (Disney/Marvel)
  6. The Secret Life of Pets 2 (Universal)
  7. Godzilla: King of the Monsters (Warner)
  8. Aladdin: Signature Collection (Disney)
  9. Rocketman (Paramount)
  10. Pokémon Detective Pikachu (Warner)

 

Year-to-date Top 10 (through September 2019):

  1. Avengers: Endgame (Disney/Marvel)
  2. Aquaman (Warner)
  3. Captain Marvel (Disney/Marvel)
  4. Bohemian Rhapsody (Fox)
  5. Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (Warner)
  6. Ralph Breaks the Internet (Disney)
  7. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (Sony Pictures)
  8. A Star Is Born (2018) (Warner)
  9. Bumblebee (Paramount)
  10. Mary Poppins Returns (Disney)

 

‘Avengers: Endgame’ Jumps to Top Seller of 2019 After Dominating August Sales

 

‘Aladdin’ Jumps Back Into Top Disc Sales Spots

Disney’s live-action remake of Aladdin returned to the No. 1 spot on both NPD VideoScan’s First Alert chart, which tracks combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc unit sales, and the dedicated Blu-ray Disc sales chart the week ended Sept. 28.

The fantasy musical had debuted in the top spot two weeks earlier before barely slipping to the second spot in its second week.

Climbing to No. 2 on both charts in its third week was Lionsgate’s John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum. It barely missed taking over the top spot, selling 99% as many copies as Aladdin.

The previous week’s top title, Fox’s X-Men: Dark Phoenix, slid to No. 3 on both charts.

The week’s top newcomer debuted at No. 4: Universal Pictures’ Yesterday, a comedy about an aspiring musician who discovers the world has forgotten about the Beatles so he gains fame by reintroducing their songs as his own. It earned $73.3 million at the domestic box office.

No. 5 on the overall sales chart was Warner’s latest reboot of Shaft, which earned $21.4 million at U.S. theaters. It was No. 8 on the Blu-ray chart.

The No. 5 Blu-ray, and No. 6 on the overall disc chart, was the Lionsgate actioner Anna, which earned $7.7 million at the domestic box office.

No. 7 for the week on both charts was the fourth newcomer to bow in the top 10, Fox’s remake of Child’s Play. The horror film earned $29.2 million in U.S. theaters.

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Blu-ray Disc formats accounted for 60% of total unit sales for Yesterday, 48% for Shaft, 58% for Anna and 56% for Child’s Play. The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray comprised 8% of total sales for Yesterday, 13% for Anna and 3% for Shaft. The 4K UHD Blu-ray of Shaft was a Best Buy exclusive.

On the Media Play News rental chart for the week ended Sept. 29, Aladdin finally hit the top spot, pushing Dark Phoenix to No. 2.

Shaft debuted at No. 3, while John Wick: Chapter 3 slid to No. 4. Anna debuted as the No. 5 rental.

Top 20 Sellers for Week Ended 9-28-19
Top 20 Rentals for Week Ended 9-29-19
Top 20 Selling Blu-ray Discs for Week Ended 9-28-19
Top 20 Blu-ray Market Share for Week Ended 9-28-19
Sales Report for Week Ended 9-28-19
Digital Sales Snapshot for Week Ended 9-30-19

‘Aladdin’ Takes Over Redbox Disc Rentals, ‘Yesterday’ Tops On Demand

Disney’s live-action Aladdin remake took over the No. 1 spot on the Redbox kiosk disc rental chart the week ended Sept. 29. The Redbox disc rental chart tracks DVD and Blu-ray Disc rentals at the company’s more than 40,000 red kiosks.

The musical fantasy had debuted at No. 3 on the chart two weeks earlier before hitting the second spot in its second week.

Universal Pictures’ Yesterday debuted at No. 1 on the Redbox On Demand chart, which tracks digital transactions, including both electronic sellthrough and streaming rentals.

Yesterday, which earned $73 million at the domestic box office, is about an aspiring musician who, when he learns he is the only one who remembers the Beatles, begins re-introducing their songs to the world as his own. It debuted as the No. 6 disc rental.

The previous week’s top rental and digital title, Fox’ X-Men: Dark Phoenix, slid to No. 2 on both charts.

The No. 3 disc rental was Warner’s latest reboot of Shaft, which was No. 5 on the On Demand chart. It earned $21 million at U.S. theaters.

Lionsgate’s John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum dropped to No. 4 on the rental chart and No. 3 on the On Demand chart.

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Another Lionsgate action thriller, Anna , debuted at No. 5 on the rental chart and No. 6 on the rental chart. It made $7.7 million at domestic theaters.

Fox’s remake of the horror film Child’s Play was No. 4 on the On Demand chart and No. 7 on the disc rental chart. It’s U.S. box office haul was $29 million.

Top DVD and Blu-ray Disc Rentals, Redbox Kiosks, Week Ended Sept. 29:

  1. Aladdin (2019) — Disney
  2. X-Men: Dark Phoenix — Fox
  3. Shaft (2019) — Warner
  4. John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum — Lionsgate
  5. Anna — Lionsgate
  6. Yesterday — Universal
  7. Child’s Play (2019) — Fox
  8. Men In Black: International — Sony Pictures
  9. The Secret Life of Pets 2 — Universal
  10. Ma — Universal

Top Digital, Redbox On Demand, Week Ended Sept. 29:

  1. Yesterday — Universal
  2. X-Men: Dark Phoenix — Fox
  3. John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum
  4. Child’s Play (2019) — Fox
  5. Shaft (2019) — Warner
  6. Anna — Lionsgate
  7. The Secret Life of Pets 2 — Universal
  8. Men In Black: International — Sony Pictures
  9. Ma — Universal
  10. The Hustle — MGM

‘Aladdin’ Edges ‘John Wick 3’ to Top Disc Sales Charts

Disney’s live-action remake of Aladdin narrowly outsold Lionsgate’s John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum to top the NPD VideoScan First Alert chart, which tracks combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc unit sales, the week ended Sept. 14.

Aladdin, which earned $355 million at the domestic box office, also topped the dedicated Blu-ray Disc chart for the week by a slightly larger margin.

The third “John Wick” movie, which earned $171 million in U.S. theaters, easily the top earner of the action franchise, sold 96.8% as many total copies as Aladdin, and 87.9% as many Blu-rays. Lionsgate earlier in the week reported John Wick: Chapter 3 had sold more than 3 million combined digital and physical copies.

Disney’s Avengers: Endgame landed at No. 3 on the overall sales chart and No. 5 on the Blu-ray chart in its fifth week of availability on disc. It sold about 10.6% as many copies during the week as Aladdin, which indicates how far ahead the top two titles were from the rest of the pack.

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The 1992 animated version of Aladdin, newly released on Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray as part of Disney’s “Signature Collection” line, was No. 4 on the overall chart and No. 3 on the Blu-ray chart. The UHD Blu-ray accounted for 28% of its sales.

The previous week’s top seller, Sony Pictures’ Men in Black: International, dropped to No. 5 on the overall chart and No. 4 on the Blu-ray chart.

Among other newcomers, Universal’s zombie comedy The Dead Don’t Die debuted at No. 11 overall and No. 14 on the Blu-ray chart.

The previous “John Wick” films also received a boost on disc thanks to the release of the latest chapter. The first film was No. 30 overall and No. 13 on the Blu-ray chart; Chapter 2 was No. 23 overall and No. 12 on the Blu-ray chart, and a double feature of both films was No. 24 overall No. 11 on the Blu-ray chart.

Blu-ray Disc formats accounted for 79% of total sales for the Aladdin remake, including the 11% contributed by the UHD BD version. For John Wick: Chapter 3, Blu-ray was 72% of the total, which included 20% from the UHD BD.

On the Media Play News rental chart for the week ended Sept. 15, John Wick: Chapter 3 was the top rental. Men in Black: International, the previous week’s top rental, dropped to No. 2.

The live-action Aladdin debuted at No. 3. Universal’s Ma and The Secret Life of Pets 2 each dropped two slots, to No. 4 and No. 5, respectively.

Top 20 Sellers for Week Ended 9-14-19
Top 20 Rentals for Week Ended 9-15-19
Top 20 Selling Blu-ray Discs for Week Ended 9-14-19
Top 20 Blu-ray Market Share for Week Ended 9-14-19
Sales Report for Week Ended 9-14-19
Digital Sales Snapshot for Week Ended 9-16-19

 

Merchandising: Focusing on ‘Aladdin’ and ‘John Wick’

Retailers offered plenty of exclusives for the Sept. 10 releases of Blu-rays for Disney’s Aladdin and Lionsgate’s John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum.

The exclusives actually extended to both versions of Disney’s Aladdin, the 2019 live-action version and the original 1992 animated classic.

Target offered 40-page filmmaker gallery books with the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray combo packs for both versions, at $34.99 each.

Best Buy had $34.99 Steelbook editions for each one.

Target’s 4K Blu-ray for 2019’s ‘Aladdin’ with gallery book
Target’s 4K Blu-ray for 1992’s ‘Aladdin’ with gallery book

 

Best Buy’s Steelbook for 2019’s ‘Aladdin’
Best Buy’s Steelbook for 1992’s ‘Aladdin’

For John Wick: Chapter 3, both Target and Best Buy offered Steelbook editions with different covers.

Target’s version was the Blu-ray/DVD combo pack for $24.99.

Best Buy had a $29.99 Steelbook of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray version. There was also a $19.99 mini-Steelbook containing a digital copy code of the film, plus a bundle of both (now sold out) for $39.99.

Walmart offered the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray for $24.99 packed with a replica of an Adjudicator coin from the film.

Target’s Steelbook for ‘John Wick: Chapter 3’
Best Buy’s Steelbook for ‘John Wick: Chapter 3’
Best Buy’s mini-Steelbook for ‘John Wick: Chapter 3’

Best Buy also had a 4K Blu-ray Steelbook of Universal’s Casino for $24.99.

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Aladdin (2019)

BLU-RAY REVIEW:

Street Date 9/10/19;
Disney;
Fantasy;
Box Office $354.53 million;
$29.99 DVD, $39.99 Blu-ray, $39.99 UHD BD;
Rated ‘PG’ for some action/peril.
Stars Will Smith, Mena Massoud, Naomi Scott, Marwan Kenzari, Navid Negahban, Nasim Pedrad, Billy Magnussen, Numan Acar.

Disney’s live-action version of Aladdin is essentially a beat-by-beat reconstruction of the animated classic, with a few key differences.

Like before, the story involves a master thief named Aladdin (Mena Massoud) who roams the streets of Agrabah yearning to find a purpose for his life, until he meets Princess Jasmine (Naomi Scott) when she poses as a commoner to escape the boredom of palace life. Aladdin’s exploits gain the attention of the kingdom’s Grand Vizier, Jafar (Marwan Kenzari), who forces Aladdin to retrieve a magic lamp from the Cave of Wonders, where touching any of the forbidden treasure inside will cause the cave to collapse (although playing with the magic carpet apparently doesn’t count as part of the treasure). But of course the forbidden treasure gets touched, forcing Aladdin to unleash the Genie (Will Smith) to escape. With his three wishes, Aladdin assumes the guise of a prince to woo Jasmine, further rousing the ire of Jafar, who wanted the power to make himself sultan.

A key difference from the animated version is the film attempts to give Jasmine a bit more agency with a bigger story arc, a handmaiden (Nasim Pedrad) and her own musical number, a song called “Speechless” designed to give her a bit more of an active role in the story than just sitting around waiting for her father to marry her off. And the “One Jump Ahead” number, used in the animated version to establish Aladdin’s character before he meets Jasmine, here is used after he meets her and his framed as his attempts to impress her by escaping the authorities.

Director Guy Ritchie injects a lot of energy into the early goings, but the film loses steam as it builds to its perfunctory conclusion, and just sort of rushes to finish the checklist of key plot points from the original version as it hastily wraps up.

The live-action Jafar comes across more as a shifty schemer than a truly menacing villain, and the film cheats a little in how it dispatches him because of how a few lines of dialogue were altered to make the final confrontation a little less concise.

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Fortunately, the film fares a bit better with the two relationships it needs to work: Aladdin and Jasmine, and Aladdin and the Genie.

Massoud makes for a charming Aladdin and shares a natural chemistry with Naomi Scott, so the love story manages to feel a bit more authentic. And they can do their own singing, which comes in handy for the centerpiece “Whole New World” magic carpet sequence (though the journey ends up weaving through some natural local splendor rather than the globetrotting of the original film).

And Will Smith does a great job as the Genie, which is no easy task considering how iconic Robin Williams made the character’s animated incarnation. Rather than try to compete with Williams’ memory, Smith successfully puts his own hip-hop infused spin on it.

So, while the live-action version isn’t going to supplant the animated version (freshly released on its own new 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray edition), it certainly proves entertaining enough in its own right. And how could it not? It already has the advantage of performing what has to be on the shortlist for consideration for the greatest Disney soundtrack of all time (there’s a reason the original film won two Oscars for its music).

Like a tribute band playing the hits, it’s never as good as the original, but you can still dance to it. And the film has the added benefit of original composer Alan Menken on board so that the subtle updates to the film’s sound don’t detract from the nostalgia.

The Blu-ray isn’t heavy on extras, but what is included focuses mostly on the music and how the filmmakers translated the animated version to live-action.

The two key making-of featurettes are a five-and-a-half-minute spotlight on Ritchie and his approach to directing the material (he also co-wrote the screenplay). A second, four-and-a-half-minute featurette focuses on Will Smith bringing the Genie to life.

The lengthiest extra is Massoud’s video journal, which runs nearly 11 minutes and offers an interesting look at filming select scenes from his perspective. It’s always fascinating to see how much of the sets they still bother to make anymore in an age of ubiquitous CGI.

There are also six deleted scenes running a total of 11 minutes that broaden the context of a few scenes in the film.

Separate from this is a two-minute deleted song sequence for a duet between Jasmine and Aladdin to sing while they are separated.

Rounding out the Blu-ray are a two-minute blooper reel and three music videos: the fairly straightforward “Speechless” by Naomi Scott, and a pair of bizarre covers of “Whole New World,” featuring Zayn and either Zhavia Ward or Becky G, depending on whether the female part is in English or Spanish.

As for digital exclusives, there’s a couple of good ones: a two-minute featurette about the staging of the massive “Prince Ali” number, and a four-minute look at creating the “Speechless” song for Jasmine.

Merchandising: Best Buy Bringing ‘Aladdin,’ ‘Cinderella’ Steelbooks

Best Buy is taking preorders for Steelbook editions of a couple of future Disney releases.

First is a Steelbook of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc combo pack of the live-action Aladdin, which just opened in theaters. It has no home release date yet but is listed at $34.99.

Next is a Steelbook of the Signature Collection Blu-ray Disc re-release of 1950’s Cinderella, arriving June 25 at $29.99. The same day Best Buy will also release a Steelbook of a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack of director Kenneth Branagh’s 2015 live-action version of Cinderella at $34.99.

Best Buy also has preorders for $34.99 Steelbooks of Fox’s 4K/3D Blu-ray combo pack of Alita: Battle Angel, due July 23, and the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray of Paramount’s Pet Sematary remake, due July 9.

The Steelbook preorders were among a slew of promotions listed by Best Buy in its weekly ad for what otherwise was a light slate of new releases during the Memorial Day week. Instead of exclusives for any of the May 28 newcomers, Best Buy mostly pushed Blu-ray and DVD catalog titles for notable franchises such as “Star Wars,” (“Stock Up on the Saga”) and “X-Men” (with Dark Phoenix due in theaters June 7.

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Best Buy also touted a selection of action movies in a Father’s Day promotion, starting at $6.99 under the banner of “His Kind of Movies.”