Merchandising: The Magic Word is ‘Shazam!’

Retailers offered a couple of exclusives for Warner’s Shazam! upon its Blu-ray release July 16.

Best Buy had an exclusive 3D Blu-ray combo pack of Shazam! for $29.99, in addition to a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Steelbook for $34.99.

Walmart offered a $29.96 gift set of the Shazam! Blu-ray combo pack with a pack-on Funko Pocket Pop keychain of the main character. Walmart also sold a single-disc DVD version with just a single “Who Is Shazam?” featurette for $16.96, as opposed to the regularly available two-disc special-edition DVD with the full range of extras for $1 more everywhere else.

Target continued to offer 20% off movies on Blu-ray and DVD, excluding new releases, through July 20 via the Cartwheel coupon function on the Target app.

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Hellboy Resurfaces

Fifteen years after the first film and numerous comic book movies later, producers felt Hellboy was ready for a comeback — with a darker hero, a new focus on adhering to the source material and involvement by creator Mike Mignola.

Lionsgate’s reimagining of Hellboy is available now digitally and on Blu-ray, DVD and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc (with Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos audio) July 23 including deleted scenes and previsualizations. The Blu-ray and digital versions also include the making-of documentary featurette “Tales of the Wild Hunt: Hellboy Reborn.”

“I loved the story, and I loved that it was based very much on the comics,” says David Harbour (Hellboy) in the featurette, adding “it’s a Hellboy with more internal struggle, with more sort of torture.”

“For me it’s actually fun to kind of get a second chance to create Hellboy,” comic creator Mignola, who is also an executive producer on the film, says in the featurette. “We’re doing in some ways some-thing that’s much more close to my material, but we’re creating a new variation on the Mike Mignola Hellboy.”

Based on the Dark Horse comic book created by Mignola, the film finds the half-demon super-hero Hellboy as he is called to the English countryside to battle a trio of rampaging giants and finds himself confronting an ancient sorceress (Milla Jovovich). The film also stars Ian McShane, Sasha Lane, Daniel Dae Kim and Thomas Haden Church.

The 2010 comic anthology Hellboy Vol. 9: The Wild Hunt, which reveals Hellboy’s origin story, is one of the inspirations for the film.

“The story of Hellboy is baked into the story of the Wild Hunt,” producer Lloyd Levin says in the featurette.

Much of the dialog, in fact, is taken directly from the comics.

“It created an opportunity to do a Hellboy movie that was more faithful to what Mike Mignola had created,” he adds.

“This one feels very different than the other films,” Mignola says. “While it’s not a direct adaptation of one of my stories, it’s taken so many pieces of so many of my stories and fit them together in a way that really works.”

McShane, who plays Professor Trevor “Broom” Bruttenholm and father figure to Hellboy, also notes the comic influence in his character.

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“They’ve made this character more like the original sort of Indiana Jonesy kind of character that he was when he found Hellboy,” he says in the featurette.

As part of her preparation for her role of Nimue, the Blood Queen, Jovovich went out and bought hardbound editions of several comic collections. “The illustrations are phenomenal,” she says. “I saw how beautifully they were done, and how much heart and soul the stories had, and thought, wow, we could really do something great here.”

Going back to the source was a mantra for the Lionsgate marketing team as well. In keeping with the strategy of staying close to the comics, the team created retail exclusives with unique custom artwork and other extras to harken back to the film’s comic book roots:


Hellboy comic creator Mignola designed artwork exclusively for the Best Buy 4K UHD Combo Pack Steelbooks.


With purchase of the 4K UHD  Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack or DVD at Walmart, Hellboy fans receive a PIN on their receipt for the download of Mike Mignola’s comic Hellboy: The Wild Hunt — the inspiration for the film. The comic is redeemable through Walmart’s Kobo e-reader or through Rakuten Kobo’s eBooks app on mobile.


The Target Blu-ray Combo Pack  double-sided Steelbook features  collectible poster art.

Merchandising: ‘Pet Sematary’ Reborn With Steelbook

Retailers didn’t offer many exclusives for the July 9 new releases, although Best Buy continued to tout its Blu-ray Steelbook editions for debuting and upcoming titles.

That includes a Steelbook for the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray of Paramount’s remake of Pet Sematary at $32.99, a savings of $2.

Best Buy’s ‘Pet Sematary’ Steelbook

Best Buy also had a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Steelbook of Universal’s 1995 post-apocalyptic adventure film Waterworld, at $19.99 (saving $5).

Best Buy’s ‘Waterworld’ Steelbook

For the July 16 release of Warner’s Shazam!, Best Buy offered a 30-day free trial of the DC Universe streaming service with preorders of the 4K Ultra Blu-ray Steelbook of the movie.

Target offered a 20% discount on all movies for shoppers who used the Cartwheel function of the Target app, which lets consumers scan barcodes of eligible items to save coupons in the app.

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Merchandising: Retailers Deliver ‘Dumbo’ Exclusives

Target and Best Buy offered exclusives for a couple of Disney titles released June 25.

At Target, the live-action version of Dumbo arrived on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray with a limited-edition filmmaker gallery book for $34.99.


Similarly, Target had a limited-edition filmmaker gallery and storybook with the Blu-ray re-release of the animated Cinderella for $28.99.

Target ‘Dumbo’ Blu-ray with booklet

Best Buy had a Dumbo 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Steelbook for $34.99.

Target ‘Cinderella’ Blu-ray with booklet

A Cinderella Blu-ray Steelbook was available at Best Buy for $29.99. In addition, a Steelbook of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray edition of the 2015 live-action version of Cinderella was available for $34.99.

Best Buy Blu-ray Steelbook for the animated ‘Cinderella’
Best Buy Blu-ray Steelbook for the live-action ‘Cinderella’

Best Buy is also taking preorders for a Toy Story 4 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Steelbook for $34.99.

Best Buy ‘Toy Story 4’ Steelbook

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Merchandising: Marvelous Merch for ‘Captain Marvel’

Best Buy and Target stores offered exclusive editions of Disney’s Captain Marvel 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc combo pack upon its release June 11.

Best Buy sold the set with Steelbook packaging for $34.99.

Best Buy’s ‘Captain Marvel’ 4K Blu-ray Steelbook

Target offered the combo pack with a limited-edition 40-page filmmaker book, also for $34.99.

Target’s ‘Captain Marvel’ 4K Blu-ray combo pack
Target’s ‘Captain Marvel’ Blu-ray with booklet

Among other titles, Walmart offered a Blu-ray of Universal’s Get Out paired with a digital copy of Us. The Blu-ray of Us arrives June 18.

Best Buy’s weekly promotions included a Father’s Day sale under the banner “Dad’s Kind of Movies,” with Blu-rays for $6.99 and $9.99 each, and 4K UHD Blu-rays for $14.99 each.

Best Buy is also taking $34.99 preorders for a Steelbook 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray of Warner’s Shazam!, due July 16 on disc.

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Merchandising: A Bag for ‘Madea’

Among the new releases for June 4, Walmart offered Lionsgate’s A Madea Family Funeral on Blu-ray with an exclusive pack-in tote bag for $19.96.

Most retail promotions for the week, however, focused on sales of catalog titles, many with a Father’s Day theme.

Best Buy’s weekly ad showed a selection of DVDs and Blu-rays starting at $6.99 under the banner “These are dad favorites.” Titles included a John Wayne collection, Jaws and The Dark Knight Trilogy.

A Target in Tustin, Calif., wheeled out a DVD/Blu-ray kiosk with Father’s Day signage and such titles as Glass, Get Out, The Mule and The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part.

Target also had select 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc titles for as low as $15 each.

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Merchandising: ‘Lego Movie 2’ Builds Retail Interest

Target ‘Lego Movie 2’ Blu-ray with minifigs

Each of the big three home entertainment retail chains offered exclusive editions of Warner’s The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part on May 7. Two of them included Lego mini-figures based on the movie.

Target stores had the Blu-ray combo pack with lenticular box art and limited-edition Rex minifigure with Plantimal Ambush for $27.99.

Walmart ‘Lego Movie 2’ Blu-ray with minifig
Walmart single-disc ‘Lego Movie 2’ DVD

Walmart offered the Blu-ray combo pack with a pack-in Emmet’s ‘Piece’ Offering minifig for $29.96.

Walmart also had a $16.96 single-disc DVD version of the film, as opposed to the widely released DVD special edition that includes deleted scenes, a music video and a behind-the-scenes featurette for just about $1 more. Walmart’s DVD includes just the featurette.

Best Buy ‘Lego Movie 2’ Blu-ray Steelbook

Best Buy, as is typical for the chain, had a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack in Steelbook packaging for $29.99.

Among preorders, Best Buy is offering a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Steelbook of Disney’s Dumbo for $34.99.

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Best Buy ‘Dumbo’ Steelbook

Merchandising: ‘Avengers: Endgame’ Preorders Are Up

The afterglow of the theatrical debut of Avengers: Endgame continued to loom large at retail April 30, as retailers continued to tout sales of catalog titles rather than push new titles with exclusive tie-ins.

Unsurprisingly, many of the sales involved previous Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, not to mention countless merchandise tie-ins such as toys, games and shirts.

Target’s ‘Avengers: Endgame’ exclusive

Best Buy and Target are also taking preorders for their exclusive editions of the upcoming 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc of not just Avengers: Endgame, but also the still-in-theaters Captain Marvel, even as street dates for both have yet to be announced.

Target’s ‘Captain Marvel’ Blu-ray with booklet

Target is taking preorders for both priced at $34.99 and its exclusive is a behind-the-scenes booklet. Avengers: Endgame comes with an Avengers Initiative: A Look Back book, and Captain Marvel comes with a 40-page filmmaker book.

Best Buy is offering Steelbooks priced at $34.99 for the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray of each title.

Best Buy’s ‘Avengers: Endgame’ Steelbook

Best Buy is also touting preorders for Steelbooks for Warner’s May 7 release of The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part Blu-ray/DVD combo at $29.99, and Universal’s May 21 release of How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray at $37.99.

Other catalog sales offered at Best Buy include Blu-rays starting at $14.99, including a “May the 4th Be With You” promotion for recent “Star Wars” movies in a variety of formats.

Another Best Buy ad encouraged fans to “Have a Superhero Party” with a variety of MCU movies, including 4K UHD Blu-rays for $24.99 each, and the recently released Steelbooks for Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Captain America: Civil War for $34.99 each.

In the digital realm, Best Buy offered $25 Showtime gift cards for $22.50 for fans to stream Showtime series.

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Target held a $15 movie sale, including Marvel Blu-rays.

Other discounts at Target included DVDs of the final season of “The Last Ship” for $19.99 (a $3 savings), season one of “Krypton” for $14.99 (a $5 savings), and season 11 of “The Big Bang Theory” for $20 (a $9.99 savings).

Merchandising: Getting Ready for ‘Endgame’

With just a few modest new releases hitting the market April 23, retailers focused more on clearing inventory than pushing exclusives.

Best Buy ‘Avengers’ catalog ad.

Best Buy used its weekly ad circular to promote Marvel movies on Blu-ray for fans to watch to prepare for the April 26 theatrical release of Avengers: Endgame. To that end, Best Buy had exclusive Steelbook editions of the newly released 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray editions of Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Captain America: Civil War, at $34.99 each.

Best Buy ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Steelbook
Best Buy ‘Captain America: Civil War’ 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Steelbook

Best Buy is also taking preorders for a Steelbook 4K UHD Blu-ray of Jordan Peele’s Us.

Target didn’t bother to include a movie section in its weekly circular, though it was selling Stephen King movies on DVD for $4.50.

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Merchandising: ‘Glass’ Among Several Retailer Exclusives

Best Buy’s ‘Glass’ Blu-ray with art cards

The big three retailers offered exclusive editions for several of the titles released April 16.

For Universal’s Glass, Target offered a $27.99 Blu-ray combo pack with box art by Alex Ross and Steelbook packaging.

Target’s ‘Glass’ Steelbook

Best Buy, which is typically known for Steelbook exclusives, instead offered the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack of Glass with special slipcover art and three art cards of the main characters from the film.

Walmart’s exclusive was a triple-feature Blu-ray of M. Night Shyamalan’s “Eastrail 177 Trilogy,” grouping Glass with predecessors Unbreakable and Split, for $29.96. Eastrail 177 is the name of the train that derails in the first film, Unbreakable.

Target’s ‘Justice League vs. The Fatal Five’ Steelbook

Target had another Steelbook edition during the week, in the form of Warner’s Justice League vs. The Fatal Five Blu-ray combo pack.

Best Buy ‘Justice League vs The Fatal Five’ Blu-ray with Star Boy figure

Best Buy offered the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray of the animated superhero film with a pack-in Star Boy fiture for $33.99.

A third title to arrive during the week with retail exclusive editions was Funimation’s Dragon Ball Super: Broly — The Movie. Best Buy had a Steelbook edition of the Blu-ray for $27.99, while Walmart had lenticular box art for $19.96.

Best Buy’s ‘Dragon Ball Super: Broly’ Steelbook

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