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Lionsgate scored a rare triple-play win on the national home video charts the week ending Sept. 8 with inventive crime thriller Now You See Me, which grossed nearly $118 million at the box office and centers around an FBI agent and Interpol detective on the trail of a troupe of illusionists who rob banks during their shows — through teleportation — and give the money to their audiences.
The film, with a star-studded cast that includes Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Woody Harrelson, debuted at No. 1 on both national sales charts — Nielsen VideoScan’s First Alert, which tracks overall sales, DVD and Blu-ray Disc combined, and Nielsen’s dedicated Blu-ray Disc First Alert — as well as Home Media Magazine’s weekly video rental chart.
Now You See Me bumped the prior week’s top seller, Warner’s The Great Gatsby, to No. 2 on both sales charts. On the rental chart, Now You See Me displaced the Paramount comedy Pain & Gain, which slipped to No. 3 — right behind Universal Studios’ Oblivion, which soared to No. 2 now that its 28-day holdback from rental outlets Netflix and Redbox has ended.
Several other new releases that arrived in stores the week after Labor Day scored high on the sales charts. Another Lionsgate title, Empire State, debuted at No. 5 on First Alert and No. 7 on the Blu-ray Disc sales chart. The actioner stars Dwayne Johnson and Emma Roberts and was released directly to video.
Anchor Bay Entertainment’s The Lords of Salem, the latest gruesome horror flick from punk-rocker-turned-director Rob Zombie, debuted at No. 6 on First Alert and No. 5 on the Blu-ray Disc sales chart.
And Spartacus: War of the Damned, the final season of the series about a slave revolt in ancient Rome, debuted at No. 8 on First Alert and No. 6 on the Blu-ray Disc sales chart. Spartacus aired on the Starz network and is distributed on disc by Anchor Bay.
Empire State also bowed at No. 4 on Home Media Magazine’s top rentals chart.
Of the new releases on the sales charts, Now You See Me generated 42 percent of its total first-week unit sales from Blu-ray Disc, a higher percentage than any of the other new titles. Spartacus: War of the Damned was close behind at 41 percent, followed by The Lords of Salem at 38 percent. Empire State was way down at 22 percent.
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