‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ Tops in Home Viewership After Blu-ray Disc, DVD Release

Five movies generated significant gains in home viewership after their May 19 release on Blu-ray Disc and DVD, led by Paramount Home Entertainment’s Sonic the Hedgehog, which soared to No. 1 on “Watched at Home” chart for the week ended May 23, up from No. 5 the prior week.

The film, based on a popular video game franchise, has been in the top five of the weekly chart — which tracks transactional video activity compiled from studio and retailer data through DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group — ever since its early digital release on March 31.

Walt Disney’s Onward, the studio’s latest Pixar animated feature film, reappeared on the chart at No. 3, also after its release on disc — and in spite of the fact that it has been available since April 3 on the Disney+ subscription streaming service. The film was one of several high-profile movies that was given an early digital release in mid-March after the pandemic-induced shutdown of movie theaters. Onward spent just two weeks in theaters prior to its March 20 digital release.

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Two other films, both from Warner Bros., that returned to the chart after their May 19 release on disc are Justice League Dark: Apokolips War (No. 6) and The Way Back (No. 17).

Universal Pictures’ Emma., also new to Blu-ray Disc and DVD, debuted on the chart at No. 15.

Warner Bros.’ Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn, No. 1 the prior week, slipped to No. 2.

Rounding out the top five on the “Watched at Home Chart” for the week ended May 23 are Sony Pictures’ Bad Boys for Life at No. 4 and Bloodshot at No. 5, down from No. 2 and No. 3, respectively.

  1. Sonic the Hedgehog (Paramount)
  2. Birds of Prey (Warner)
  3. Onward (Disney)
  4. Bad Boys for Life (Sony)
  5. Bloodshot (Sony, 2020)
  6. Justice League Dark: Apokolips War (Warner)
  7. The Call of the Wild (Disney, 2020)
  8. Fantasy Island (Sony)
  9. Jumanji: The Next Level (Sony)
  10. The Gentlemen (STX/Universal, 2019)
  11. I Still Believe (Lionsgate)
  12. 1917 (Universal)
  13. Dolittle (Universal)
  14. The Invisible Man (Universal)
  15. Emma. (Universal, 2020)
  16. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (Disney)
  17. The Way Back (Warner, 2020)
  18. Spies in Disguise (Fox)
  19. Ford v Ferrari (Fox)
  20. Knives Out (Lionsgate)


Source: DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group
Includes U.S. digital sales, digital rentals, and DVD, Blu-ray Disc and 4K Ultra HD sales for the week ended May 23

Universal’s ‘Emma’ Available for Purchase in May

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment will release the latest remake of Emma. for digital purchase May 5, and on Blu-ray Disc and DVD May 19. The film is available now for premium digital rental.

Jane Austen’s 19th-century comedy on misguided matchmaking and romantic mishaps chronicles the privileged but well-meaning young Emma Woodhouse (Anya Taylor-Joy), a restless “queen bee” without rivals in her sleepy little English town. In this glittering satire of social class, Emma must navigate her way through the challenges of growing up, misguided matches and romantic missteps to realize the love that has been there all along.

The cast includes Johnny Flynn, Bill Nighy, Mia Goth, Josh O’Connor, Miranda Hart, Callum Turner, Tanya Reynolds, Connor Swindells, Rupert Graves and Gemma Whelan.

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Extras include deleted scenes; a gag reel; commentary with director Autumn de Wilde, screenwriter Eleanor Catton and cinematographer Christopher Blauvelt; and the behind-the-scenes featurette “A Playful Tease.”

Extras exclusive to the Blu-ray and digital versions include the featurette “Crafting a Colorful World,” in which the cast and crew discuss the gorgeously preserved locations, extravagant set dressing, and authentic Regency costumes featured in the film; and “The Autumn Gaze,” an intimate look at director Autumn de Wilde’s filmmaking process and her photographic eye.

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Amazon Launches ‘Prime Cinema’ for Early Digital Movie Releases

Amazon early on Sunday, March 22, announced via email the launch of Prime Video | Cinema, a new online hub where the company says “you can watch the latest movies just released in theaters — without leaving home.”

Disney/Pixar’s Onward is available to buy for $19.99, while Universal Pictures’ The Invisible Man, The Hunt and Emma are available to rent at the same price. The price is also the same for HD or SD.

All four films were made available for home viewing earlier than expected due to the closure of movie theaters in response to the escalating novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

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Consumers who digitally rent a film have 30 days to start watching it, and must finish watching the movie within 48 hours.