Home Video: What's Old Is New Again

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Amid declining home-video sales of recent movie titles, Hollywood studios are ramping up releases of DVD and Blu-ray Disc restorations of classic films, the Wall Street Journal reported today (Monday). Citing figures from researchers IHS Screen Digest, the newspaper observed that while DVD revenue fell 50 percent last year from the peak year of 2004, sales of so-called catalog releases fell only 23 percent and accounted for 44 percent of all home-video revenue last year. Although releases of classic films and TV shows have always accounted for a healthy percentage of home-video sales, studios have found that they are less vulnerable to rental competition from online operators like Netflix, the Journal observed, noting that studios are stepping up the pace of such releases with a variety of special packaging, including box sets and anniversary editions, many of which are finding their way into separate sections of retailers devoted to catalog titles as well as the check-out lines of supermarkets.



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