'Despicable Me 2' Sells 4.5 Million-Plus DVDs, Blu-rays in First Week

10:04 PM PST 12/18/2013 by Thomas K. Arnold
'Despicable Me 2'

"Fast & Furious 6" sold nearly three million units and came in at No. 2 on the home entertainment charts.

The good old days were all of a sudden back last week as a hot summer theatrical tentpole from Universal Studios Home Entertainment was released to the home video market and posted amazingly strong sales numbers reminiscent of the glory days of DVD back in the early 2000s.

Despicable Me 2 shot straight to the top of the national sales charts the week ending Dec. 15, easily capturing the No.1 spot on both the Nielsen VideoScan First Alert sales chart - which tracks overall disc sales, DVD and Blu-ray Disc combined – and Nielsen’s dedicated Blu-ray Disc sales chart.

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According to Universal Studios, the film sold more than 4.5 million units on DVD and Blu-ray Disc its first week in stores, a hefty tally not seen in years.

The animated sequel is the year’s No. 2 movie, behind Iron Man 3, in terms of domestic box office earnings - $367.4 million – and has amassed a whopping $918 million worldwide.

Also posting a strong showing on the home video sales charts was another Universal summer theatrical hit, Fast & Furious 6, one of whose stars, Paul Walker, recently perished in a car accident. The film bowed at No. 2 on both sales charts, with unit sales estimated by Home Media Magazine’s Market Research Department of nearly 3 million.

Both titles sold predominantly on Blu-ray Disc, with Despicable Me 2 generating 56% of its total unit sales from the high-definition format and Fast & Furious 6, 55%. That’s a surprising turn for an animated family film but a good sign for Blu-ray Disc.

The previous week’s top seller, 20th Century Fox’s Wolverine, slipped to No. 3 on both charts its second week in stores, after having debuted at No. 1.

Despicable Me 2and Fast & Furious 6 were the only new releases to make the First Alert top 20. The original Despicable Me shot back up to No. 8 from No. 25 the previous week, while several Christmas standards continue their traditional December runs on the chart, including Warner’s Elf at No. 7 and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation at No. 17.

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On Home Media Magazine’s weekly rental chart, the two top spots went to theatrical hits from studios that hold back their new releases from Redbox and Netflix for 28 days. Warners' Man of Steel, initially released Nov. 12, was No. 1, followed by DreamWorks Animation’s Turbo (distributed by 20th Century Fox) at No. 2.

The previous week’s top rental, Sony Pictures’ The Smurfs 2, slipped to No. 7, behind Lionsgate’s Red 2 (which remained at No. 3) and three other October releases that didn’t hit Redbox and Netflix until last month: 20th Century Fox’s The Internship at No. 4 and The Heat at No. 5, and Universal Studios’ R.I.P.D. at No. 6.

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