Warner Bros. home release of the animated “Scoob!” began today, and it’s already #1 on the iTunes and Amazon Prime charts ranking transactions. (Rental price $19.99; digital download $24.99.)
With so little in the way of new releases, it might be more surprising if it didn’t reach #1. What’s impressive here is how quickly it happened. Amazon Prime showed it at #1 by late morning. By comparison, “Trolls: World Tour” debuted in first place on its second day. “Sonic the Hedgehog,” like “Trolls” also renting at $19.99, was #5 its first day before jumping to #1.
The iTunes ranking appeared in late afternoon (its charts change throughout the day). This placement differs from “Trolls,” which never charted there. Apple’s VOD platform apparently doesn’t list releases that don’t have a download option (“Invisible Man” is just now appearing after two months out, now that it can be bought as well as rented.)
Of course, we remain in unusual times. Few theaters are open, and Warners isn’t opening “Scoob!” in any of them. And, like “Trolls,” this is a family film and parents are anxious for ways to entertain their kids.
Universal did Warners a huge favor by holding the line on their top pricing for “Trolls” through this period. Had they lowered it by half or more, as usually happens a few weeks into premium play, it might have encouraged consumers to wait a few weeks. Instead, enough people clicked the purchase button with little hesitation.
There’s another early success to note. The Tom Hardy-starring “Capone” (also skipping theaters) from Vertical Entertainment, which was released on Tuesday, is #2 at iTunes at the moment. Unlike most new VOD premieres from that and similar companies, it has a higher price ($9.99) than the normal $5.99-6.99 cost. Distributors, particularly independents, will note that as well.