'Simpsons' DVD sales save world


"The Simpsons Movie," the biggest boxoffice DVD release of the week, easily topped the national DVD sales chart for the week ending Dec. 23.

The Fox DVD was launched with a massive promotion with events in cities nationwide. In New York, the Empire State Building was turned Simpsons yellow, the landmark's first promotion for a movie. Also in New York, Bryant Park hosted an ice show with a 25-foot inflatable Homer hand and 2,500 mega-doughnut balloons, while street teams in Times Square distributed yellow Santa hats.

"Simpsons" was followed on the Nielsen VideoScan First Alert sales chart by the previous week's two big releases, Warners' "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" at No. 2 and Universal's "The Bourne Ultimatum" at No. 3, each down a notch from their debut frame.

But on Home Media Magazine's rental chart, "Bourne" remained in the top spot for the second week in a row, while "Simpsons" debuted at No. 2. "Bourne" generated $12.8 million in rental revenue, nearly as much as it did its first week in stores, while "Simpsons" was close behind with estimated rental earnings of $11.8 million.

Most of the other big summer theatricals released earlier in the quarter continued to generate strong sales in the final week before Christmas, including Disney's "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End," landing at No. 4 on First Alert; Disney's "Ratatouille," at No. 8; and DreamWorks/Paramount's "Shrek the Third" at No. 11.