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The British Association for Screen Entertainment (BASE) today released figures based on data from the Official Charts Company and IHS Markit that showed consumer spend across the video category rose by 7.5 per cent in 2017, a third consecutive year of growth that brings the total value of the category to £2.69 billion.
Ownership continues to be a significant driver to the video category’s ongoing success, with 38 per cent of the category’s value coming from people buying content (either digitally or on physical formats), and 62 per cent of people are now choosing to rent or stream their film and TV content by taking advantage of the range of content delivery options available to them. Within these figures, 51 per cent of transactional spend is still attributed to physical disc sales across DVD, Blu-ray and its more recent 4K UHD variant format which has benefited in 2017 from an uplift in the number of titles being released.
Digital video services continued to show strong growth in 2017, increasing 22 per cent year-on-year2 with the overall audio-visual industry growing 4.4 per cent across the year to a massive £10.97 billion2 and reflecting a continued hunger for entertainment content in all of its forms across the physical and digital arenas.
Disney’s live action remake of Beauty And The Beast saw off all-comers to top the 2017 Official Video Chart, selling more than 1.55 million copies across physical and digital retail (including sales of the box set containing both the live action and animated versions) to become the best-selling video title of the year. Disney saw this success compounded by its continued stewardship of the Star Wars franchise, with Rogue One: A Star Wars Story in at a close number two, selling in excess of 1.38 million physical and digital copies.
Breaking down the format sales of the top two titles showcases the viewing decisions audiences are making, with 74 per cent of Beauty And The Beast’s predominantly family audience choosing to watch on DVD, whilst 13 per cent chose Blu-ray and 13 per cent opted to download and keep a digital version. Meanwhile, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story saw a much higher proportion of viewers (36 per cent) buying the standalone adventure on Blu-ray, with 51 per cent opting for DVD and a consistent 13 per cent again choosing digital download, lending credence to the fact that franchise and sci-fi fans continue to be drawn to the popular high definition physical format which now accounts for more than 14.5 per cent of physical sales.
Fittingly, Universal’s Bridget Jones’s Baby cuts something of a lonely figure in the Official Video Top 10 as the only romantic comedy to sell more than a million copies across physical and digital platforms in 20171. The rest of the top 10 meanwhile speaks to the ongoing popularity of original family adventures such as Warner Bros Home Entertainment Group’s Fantastic Beasts & Where To Find Them, Disney’s Moana, Twentieth Century Fox’s Trolls and Universal’s Sing, as well as continuing franchises such as Despicable Me 3 and Guardians Of The Galaxy – Vol 2. In a year where wholly new blockbuster IP again performed well, the popularity of these family and franchise titles saw every title in the top 10 sell more than 500,000 copies1, with the top five each shifting more than a million units across physical and digital offerings. Moving into the top 20 creates a more nuanced picture of audience tastes, with original offerings like The Girl On The Train (Twentieth Century Fox, distributing on behalf of eOne), Wonder Woman (Warner Bros Home Entertainment Group), La La Land (Lionsgate Home Entertainment, distributed by Elevation Sales) and Spider-Man: Homecoming (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment) among the diverse range of titles performing strongly. Encouragingly, Warner Bros Home Entertainment Group has further cause for celebration as the year ends, with Christopher Nolan’s critically acclaimed Dunkirk selling more than 640,000 physical discs as the year drew to a close, amassing the third largest week one of 2017 in the process.
Further supporting the sense that family entertainment flew in 2017, each entry in the Official Children’s Top 15 sold more than 100,000 copies, ranging from the charming Ballerina from eOne and Twentieth Century Fox selling more than 168,0001 copies, right through to the all-conquering Moana selling a more than 1 million1 copies for Disney.
The 2017 chart was not just a story of film, however, with audience tastes continuing to be represented in all their forms. Micky Flanagan: An’ Another Fing Live took the crown for Spirit Entertainment in the Special Interest charts, dwarfing the sales of 2016’s winner in the process. In the music charts, Oasis documentary Supersonic (also eOne) saw off all-comers, Joe Wicks – The Body Coach Workout (BBC Worldwide) rounded out an incredible year in the Official Sports & Fitness chart. Pre-school titles such as perennial favourites Peppa Pig (Twentieth Century Fox / eOne) and Thomas And Friends (Mattel) also continue to deliver strong cumulative sales across their franchises as the pre-school DVD market remains robust.
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