Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Q1 Revenue Declines

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment July 30 reported first-quarter (ended June 30) revenue of $200 million, which was down about 15% from revenue of $234 million during the previous-year period.

The studio cited higher revenue in its Funimation animation unit.

Regardless, home entertainment topped theatrical revenue at $164 million, which was a 73% improvement over $95 million generated at the box office a year ago.

Sony Pictures Television again led the motion picture segment, generating $315 million in revenue, up 18% from $267 million last year.

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Total motion pictures revenue topped $738 million, which was 18% above the $624 million generated during the previous-year period.

The studio attributed the gain in part to global box office revenue from Men in Black: International and initial sales of Spider-Man: Far from Home — the latter recently topping $1 billion in global ticket sales.

The latest web crawler superhero release, coupled with Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and Angry Birds Movie 2, are expected to drive box office and home entertainment through the rest of the fiscal year.

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse generated $375 million in box office tickets worldwide, including $190 million domestically. It was released into retail channels March 19.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Tops $1 Billion Fiscal-Year 2019 Revenue

Sony Pictures Hone Entertainment April 26 reported fourth-quarter (ended March 31) fiscal-year 2019 revenue of $300 million, up about 3.4% from revenue of $290 million during the previous-year period.

The studio topped $1 billion in revenue for the fiscal year — up 3.1% from revenue of $982 million in fiscal year 2018.

Top retail releases in the fiscal year included Peter Rabbit, Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, The Equalizer 2, Venom and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.

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 Venom ranks the sixth-bestselling combined DVD/Blu-ray Disc title in 2019 with $13.1 million in revenue and 657,000 units sold, according to The-Numbers.com. The Tom Hardy-starrer generated more than $37.6 million in 2018 on 1.7 million discs.

The Equalizer 2 ranks 21st with $4.5 million in revenue and 256,000 units sold. The title, starring Denzel Washington, generated $16.3 million in revenue last year on 855,000 discs sold.

Peter Rabbit generated $18.4 million on 1 million discs sold in 2018. Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation sold $37 million worth of discs (2 million).

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse was only released into retail channels on March 19.

Top 2018 release — Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle — sold more than $65 million in combined DVD/Blu-ray Disc unit sales.

Current quarter SPHE releases include A Dog’s Way Home, Holmes & Watson, Escape Room, Miss Bala and Never Look Away.

 

‘Spider-Verse’ Edges ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ on Disc Sales Charts

The week ended March 23 saw a pair of newcomers in a close race for No. 1 on the national home video sales charts, with Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse outpacing Walt Disney Studios’ Mary Poppins Returns.

Spider-Verse climbed to the top spot of the NPD VideoScan First Alert chart, which tracks combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc unit sales, and the dedicated Blu-ray Disc sales chart after taking in about $190 million at the domestic box office and claiming the Oscar for Best Animated Feature.

Mary Poppins Returns, a sequel to the 1964 family classic Mary Poppins, sold 90% as many copies as Spider-Verse. It earned $171.9 million in U.S. theaters.

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The previous week’s top seller, Warner’s Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, slipped to No. 3 on both charts.

Disney’s Animated Ralph Breaks the Internet took No. 4 on both charts in its fourth week.

No. 5 on both charts went to Universal Pictures’ Mortal Engines.

Blu-ray Disc formats comprised 78% of unit sales for both Spider-Verse and Mary Poppins Returns. Of those, 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc edition accounted for 16% of Spider-Verse sales, compared with 8% for Poppins.

On the Media Play News rental chart for the week ended March 24, Spider-Verse debuted at No. 1, with Grindelwald slipping to No. 2.

Paramount’s Instant Family held onto the No. 3 spot, while Universal’s Green Book slid to No. 4. Mary Poppins Returns was the No. 5 rental.

Top 20 Sellers for Week Ended 3-23-19
Top 20 Rentals for Week Ended 3-24-19
Top 20 Blu-ray Market Share for Week Ended 3-23-19
Top 20 Blu-ray Market Share for Week Ended 3-23-19
Sales Report for Week Ended 3-23-19
Digital Sales Snapshot for Week Ended 3-25-19

Merchandising: Retailers Offer Exclusives for ‘Spider-Verse,’ ‘Mary Poppins’

March 19 saw the release of two big titles, Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse and Disney’s Mary Poppins Returns, and retailers offered a number of exclusive editions for each.

Best Buy had a Blu-ray Steelbook edition of Spider-Verse for $27.99.

Best Buy ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ Steelbook

Target had a $24.99 edition of the Blu-ray packaged with a 48-page mini-book, “The Art of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.”

Target ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ Digibook

Walmart offered a $27.96 Spider-Verse gift set containing the Blu-ray combo pack and a pack-in Miles Morales action figure.

Walmart ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ Blu-ray with action figure

Amazon.com had an exclusive Spider-Verse Blu-ray combo pack with a slipcover containing holographic artwork, listed at $38.99 but marked as out of stock until April 2.

Amazon ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ exclusive cover

For Mary Poppins Returns, Best Buy had a Steelbook of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack for $34.99, plus a $19.99 Blu-ray Steelbook of the 1964 original Mary Poppins.

Best Buy ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ Steelbook
Best Buy ‘Mary Poppins’ Steelbook

Target offered a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray of Mary Poppins Returns with digibook packaging containing a limited-edition filmmaker gallery and storybook. It was listed as $34.99 in the chain’s weekly ad circular but $32.99 online.

Target ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ Digibook

Best Buy also touted a preorder of its exclusive Steelbooks for Warner’s Aquaman on Blu-ray at $29.99 at 4K UHD BD at $34.99. The discs arrive March 26 but the preorder includes a code to watch it now through Movies Anywhere.

‘Green Book,’ ‘Roma,’ ‘Bohemian Rhapsody,’ ‘Black Panther’ Lead Oscar Winners

The big story of the 91st Academy Awards Feb. 24 is that Hollywood isn’t quite ready to crown Netflix with its highest honor just yet, as another traditional studio film, Universal Pictures’ Green Book, earned the Oscar for Best Picture from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Green Book, which is available now for digital download and will arrive on Blu-ray and DVD March 12, also earned Oscars for Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor for Mahershala Ali (his second win in the category after 2016’s Moonlight).

Many prognosticators had pegged Netflix’s Roma as the favorite for Best Picture, but Alfonso Cuarón’s semi-autobiographical reflection of his childhood in Mexico City still ended up with three historic Oscars. Cuarón won for both Best Director and Best Cinematography, the first individual to win both awards. Cuarón also accepted Roma’s award for Best Foreign-Language Film, though technically the win is attributed to the home country — in this case, Mexico, the first film for the country in the category.

Universal’s Bohemian Rhapsody, the biopic of the rock band Queen, rode its musical stylings to four Oscars, with Best Actor Rami Malek leading the way with his performance as Freddie Mercury. The film also won for Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing, while John Ottman won his first Oscar for Best Film Editing. The film is available now on disc and digital.

Meanwhile, the ceremony took on a bit of a comic book flair, as Marvel’s Black Panther set a new mark for most Oscar wins by a superhero movie, with three, passing the two won by 2008’s The Dark Knight and 2004’s The Incredibles. The film, available now on disc and digital from Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, won for Best Costume Design, Best Production Design and Best Original Score. The wins represent the first Oscars for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

And Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, which arrives digitally Feb. 26 and on Blu-ray and DVD March 19, won for Best Animated Feature.

Pixar’s Bao, included with Disney’s home video release of Disney’s Incredibles 2, won for Best Animated Short.

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Best Actress went to Olivia Colman for The Favourite, which is available now digitally and on Blu-ray and DVD March 5. Colman, who plays Queen Anne in the film, will play Elizabeth II in the upcoming third season of “The Crown” on Netflix.

Best Supporting Actress went to Regina King for If Beale Street Could Talk, which arrives digitally March 12 and on Blu-ray and DVD March 26.

Best Documentary Feature went to Free Solo, which is available for digital download now and arrives on DVD March 5 from National Geographic. The film chronicles a rock climber’s attempt to summit Yosemite National Park’s El Capitan without equipment.

Spike Lee won his first Oscar as part of the writing team for BlackKklansman, which won Best Adapted Screenplay. The film is available now digitally and on disc from Universal.

A complete list of winners is available here.

Sony Pictures Ups Q3 Theatrical Revenue 76%

Sony Pictures Entertainment Feb. 1 reported third-quarter (ended Dec. 31, 2018) theatrical revenue of $532 million, up 76% from revenue of $302 million in the previous-year period.

Total revenue topped $2.45 billion, up 6.5% from $2.3 billion last year. Operating income increased nearly 10% to $102 million from $93 million.

Principle box office drivers included sci-fi thriller Venom, starring Tom Hardy, with $855 million in global revenue, and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, with $225 million.

In the previous-year period, top box office titles included Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle ($329 million) and Blade Runner: 2049 ($163 million).

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On the retail side, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment generated revenue of $320 million, down less than 4% from revenue of $331 million in the previous-year period. Through nine months of the fiscal year, home entertainment revenue was up 3% at $713 million from $692 million during the previous-year period.

Home entertainment releases in the quarter included Venom, Sicario: Day of the Soldado, The Equalizer 2, Alpha and Hotel Transylvania 3 : Summer Vacation.

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Hotel Transylvania 3, Blade Runner 2049 and Spider-Man: Homecoming were the top-selling SPHE titles released on DVD/Blu-ray Disc in 2018 – with combined revenue of $140.6 million, according to The-Numbers.com. .

 

Netflix’s ‘Roma’ Leads Oscar Nominations

The critically acclaimed film Roma from director Alfonso Cuarón scored a major victory in Netflix’s efforts to be taken seriously as a movie-distribution outlet, securing 10 Oscar nominations.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the nominees for the 91st Academy Awards Jan. 22. Roma tied with Fox Searchlight’s The Favourite, which also had 10 nominations.

Roma is available now for viewing on the SVOD service, having qualified for the Oscars with a brief theatrical run at the end of 2018. Its nominations include Best Picture, Best Foreign-Language Film (representing Mexico), Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Actress for Yalitza Aparicio, Best Supporting Actress for Marina de Tavira, Best Cinematography, Best Production Design, Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing. Its 10 nominations tie it with 2000’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon for most nominations by a foreign-language film.

Another Netflix-distributed film, the Coen Bros.’ The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, earned three nominations, including adapted screenplay, original song for “When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings,” and costume design.

The Favourite earned nominations for Best Picture, Best Actress for Olivia Colman (who takes over as Queen Elizabeth II on Netflix’s “The Crown” later this year), Best Supporting Actress for Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz, Best Director for Yorgos Lanthimos, Best Original Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing and Best Production Design.

An aggressive marketing push from Walt Disney Studios helped secure seven nominations for Marvel Studios’ Black Panther, including for Best Picture, the first comic-book based superhero film to earn such an honor (a decade after the snub of The Dark Knight supposedly prompted the Academy to increase the Best Picture field from five nominees to up to as many as 10 – there were eight this year). Black Panther also earned noms for Best Original Score, Best Original Song for “All the Stars,” Best Costume Design, Best Production Design, Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing. The film is readily available through digital channels and on Blu-ray and DVD. It was the No. 3-selling disc of 2018, according to the NPD Group.

And in a bit of a double whammy for comic book movies, Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse earned a nomination for Best Animated Feature, alongside Disney’s Incredibles 2 (available now on disc and digital) and Ralph Breaks the Internet (available digitally Feb. 12 and on disc Feb. 26), Fox’s Isle of Dogs (available now on disc and digital), and Gkids’ Mirai.

Other Best Picture nominees include Universal’s BlackKklansman (available on disc and digital), which earned six nominations; Fox’s Bohemian Rhapsody (on digital now, disc Feb. 12), which earned five noms, including Best Actor for Rami Malek; Universal’s Green Book (on digital Feb. 19, disc March 15), which earned five noms; Warner’s A Star Is Born (available now digitally, on disc Feb. 19), which earned eight noms, including Best Original Song for “Shallow”; and Annapurna’s Vice.

Like Roma, Cold War also was nominated for Best Foreign-Language Film, representing Poland, and Best Director, for Paweł Pawlikowski, marking the first time two foreign-language nominees were also nominated in the directing category. The other foreign-language nominees were Lebanon’s Caparnaum, Germany’s Never Look Away and Japan’s Shoplifters (due on Disc and Digital Feb. 12 from Magnolia Home Entertainment).

The 91st Academy Awards ceremony will be held Feb. 24 in Los Angeles. A full list of nominees is available at Oscars.com.

Sony Has High Hopes for the ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ In-Home Entertainment Experience

Buoyed by the box office and Golden Globes success of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Sony Electronics used the animated movie as a cornerstone to its CES 2019 presentation Jan. 8 in Las Vegas.

Following opening comments about Sony’s new “communities of interest” company culture, interlinking consumers with creators and technology from CEO Kenichiro Yoshida, Tom Rothman, chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment’s motion picture group, spoke about how strong entertainment content and intellectual property are crucial to fulfilling the studio’s vision in the theater and in the home.

“A critical part of the lifespan of movie content is the home entertainment window following its theatrical moment,” said Rothman. “And audiences, watching great films and television content at home, want the best home theater experience.”

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse has generated $276 million at the global box office and won the Golden Globe for Best Animated Motion Picture.

Using the visuals, storytelling and technology behind Into the Spider-Verse, Kristine Belson, president Sony Pictures Animation, said animated movies generally have a long life at retail in the home entertainment window.

“It’s truly so important to filmmakers and audiences,” said Belson.

She went on to describe how Sony’s technology and products help turn creators’ vision into reality. Belson cited examples such as Sony’s CineAlta Camera Venice and α9 full-frame mirrorless camera that are used in the creation of TV shows and movies.

She also highlighted Sony’s new 8K TV lineup, including the Bravia Master Series that Sony claims adapts the creators’ artistic intent in the home.

The Master Series Z9G (98-inch/85-inch) is Sony’s first series of 8K LCD TVs, featuring the next-generation image processor X1 Ultimate equipped with 8K ultra-resolution algorithm custom database, enabling to up-convert any content to 8K resolution.