Wal-Mart....A new trend...but not a good one

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Erwin, Sep 23, 2003.

  1. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

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    I know some people have mentioned in the past that Wal-Mart has the Fullscreen version of the DVD only. Usually my Wal-Mart Stores (the four in my area) give you the option of either of WS or FS which is OK. But, as soon as that title gets marked down (or "Roll Back" in Wal-Mart terms), the WS version is no longer available. I was going to get Dr. Dolittle 2 which had been marked down to $8.78 and there was FS at all stores. The same for "Antwone Fisher", "Predator", "Catch Me if You Can", "Big Momma's House", and others. This can't be because it's the only version available. The thing that mostly gets me is that Wal-Mart usually has the best price on cheap DVDs, but I am more than willing to pay an additional $4-$2 for the WS version somewhere else, of course.
     
  2. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Isn't Wal-Mart able to drop the prices because they usuallu have an over abundance of them? Actually, isn't this the reason why every store does that?

    If there's a bright side to this, maybe they see the WS version as "More Valuable" and won't subject it to the cheaper price?

    One can dream...
     
  3. Greg*go

    Greg*go Supporting Actor

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    Another note with Mark's comment is maybe the sell out of the widescreen first, and have an over abundance of FS to sell cheaply.
     
  4. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

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    "Another note with Mark's comment is maybe the sell out of the widescreen first, and have an over abundance of FS to sell cheaply."

    I would like to believe that but online retailers have a similiar price drop on the same titles. The process of a DVD goes like this:
    First Week: as low as $14.99 @ stores
    Next Week: Back to the standard $19.99 to $18.99 price
    Next Step: $14.99 again
    Next Step: $9.99 to $8.99
    Final Step (doesn't happen with most titles worth buying): $5.99
     
  5. Joshua Clinard

    Joshua Clinard Screenwriter

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    I agree with Greg. Wal-Mart usually sell out of widescreen first, and have an plethora of Fullscreen copies left. They usually sit on the shelf for a long time too. It is also worth noting that they rarely re-order widescreen copies when they are out. Actually, they rarely re-order at all. When they sell out of something, they just re-stock the shelf space with the next new thing. Most titles are probably replaced with another titles within 12-16 months. And I don't think this is a new trend at all. It has been going on for years.

    Exceptions include Matirx, Star Wars, Harry Potter, Monsters Inc, etc.
     
  6. Chris_Morris

    Chris_Morris Screenwriter

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  7. WillG

    WillG Producer

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  8. Chris Lockwood

    Chris Lockwood Producer

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    Last time I was there, they had both versions of many titles, & only WS or P&S* of a few titles that are available in both. I imagine the bias toward stocking one or the other varies from city to city based on sales.

    *Let's not glorify it by calling it "fullscreen". That word should only be used for TV shows or older movies whose OAR happens to be 4x3 or close to it. My screen is 16x9, so a release chopped to 4x3 is not FS anyway.
     
  9. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

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    "*Let's not glorify it by calling it "fullscreen". That word should only be used for TV shows or older movies whose OAR happens to be 4x3 or close to it. My screen is 16x9, so a release chopped to 4x3 is not FS anyway."


    Pan & Scan or "Up to 40% Less of the Movie!!"


    [​IMG]
     
  10. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    I always figured they should also chop off part of the artwork on P&S titles as well to give you a good idea of what you're getting.

    Lord of the Rings - Widescreen
    [​IMG]

    and
    Lord of the Rings - Fullscreen
    [​IMG]


    Maybe people would get it then?
     
  11. Chad A Wright

    Chad A Wright Supporting Actor

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    My Wal-Mart (where I do most of my buying) has widescreen and pan&scan when a film is first released. After it is considered a "catalog title", they only stock fullscreen. I went to pick up Predator the other day, and it was full screen only.
     
  12. ChrisBEA

    ChrisBEA Screenwriter

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  13. Bryan X

    Bryan X Producer

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    Yeah, as I've stated in other threads, Wal-Mart pisses me off with their FS bias.

    I went to get 'Holes' on it's release Tuesday, and although they did have some widescreen the ratio was about 10 to 1 in favor of FS.

    I was glad to see they did have the Widescreen version at all, but it's frustrating watching Wal-Mart slowly trend towards FS over the past couple years. Unfortunately, Wal-Mart is my only local B&M option.
     
  14. Todd H

    Todd H Go Dawgs!

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    I went to Wal-Mart this afternoon to pick up The Matrix Reloaded. I live in a small town so I don't have many options when it comes to DVD buying. As I sift through the stacks of foolscreen copies, I notice that there are no widescreen copies to be found. I then take a long look at the DVD shelf. It seems that everything was foolscreen. The only widescreen DVD's they had were films only released on DVD in OAR. I ask the drone whether they had any widescreen copies. She then tells me that they didn't get any. Needless to say I was pissed.

    I then head to my local video store. I don't rent movies, but I figured they probably sell new DVDs as well so I gave it a shot. As I walk in I see the Reloaded display. I walk up to it, praying that there's at least 1 widescreen copy left. Much to my surprise, they were all widescreen. One of the ladies that works there was stocking the shelf. She saw the look on my face when I spotted the widescreen version and said "You must have just come from Wal-Mart. They have pretty much stopped selling widescreen there." Turns out she was the manager and had a lot of people come in looking for a widescreen version. She then tells me that she never orders fullscreen. And she was right. Every DVD in the place was OAR.

    We talked for a couple of minutes about the idiocy of Wal-Mart and their fullscreen loving shoppers. Turns out she was an OAR fan as well. And even though I paid a couple of extra dollars more than what I would have at Wal-Mart, they definitely earned all of my future business.

    So the question is, has Wal-Mart started stocking only the foolscreen editions of movies that see a dual release? Because I could not find one anywhere in the entire store.
     
  15. HankM

    HankM Second Unit

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    I had a hard time finding my widescreen copy of the The Matrix Reloaded at Walmart. The huge display was all fullscreen, the advertisement sign said full screen $14.84. Finally I found a widescreen copy at the bottom left of the display. The funny thing is is that everytime I'm in there buying a new release I see people buying the widescreen version when there is a choice. Walmart should wake up and smell the coffee.
     
  16. David Lambert

    David Lambert Executive Producer

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    That must be a decision made by your local Wal=Mart, by the region, or perhaps it was made at HQ but only affects select stores.

    MY local Wal-Mart stocks both WS and FS versions of all DVDs that released in both versions. The only thing that's bothered me recently was the Babe re-release, when I only saw 1 WS copy vs. a dozen FS copies. A person who works there told me that it was a problem with what was sent to them, not what was ordered. The following week their WS copies were there.

    It hadn't mattered to me in the end, since I wasn't getting it that first week because there was a lot of stuff hitting and I needed to spread it around, so I was waiting on Babe anyway. So that little problem actually worked out in my favor!
     
  17. WesleyHester

    WesleyHester Stunt Coordinator

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    When my local Wal-Mart gets new releases, they usually get wide- and full-screen versions. Here too, they get a MUCH larger amount of full-screen versions over wide-screen. They do not restock, just put out the new release the following Tuesday (usuaully).

    Most custom displays that set in the floor only have one or two spots that have the wide-screen version (usually near the bottom). Most wide-screen versions on the shelf are difficult to find. Most full-screen versions are on the end-caps or in the front of the wide-screen versions.

    Unfortunately in my location and lack of competiion for the Wal-Mart here, new releases start at the $18-$19 range and not $14.99.

    Something I don't like that's been happening too often here lately is that new releases are not placed on the shelves in a timely matter. Even late Tuesday afternoon, I coundn't find new releases on the shelves in Electronics or up front near the registers. I simply pay $1 or $2 more at Blockbuster or Movie Gallery down the road.

    Something else I don't like is similar to what David Lambert just mentioned above and that is the full-screen versions being put on the shelf days (even up to a week) before the wide-screen versions. Also fustrating is knowing alot of times the wide screen versions are in the store still boxed up (more than likely arrived a week or more before the release date) somewhere and that the associates still haven't placed it on the shelves.

    Something funny that happened recently (not Wal-Mart's fault here) was I purchased the "wide-screen" version of There's Something More About Mary. Out of an entire case of DVDs on the shelf (20+ something) there was only one wide-screen at the very back on the shelf. Got it home and it was a full-screen version in a wide-screen package (just me luck). I gave it to my brother. A week later Wal-Mart finally got the wide-screen version in.
     
  18. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    The decision as to what to stock or not stock is made at the store level unless it is inventory time at the warehouses or distribution centers, then it's no longer the descretion of the dept. manager. Items are clearenced when they are not selling well and are going out of season. Rollbacks are anybody's guess. I worked for Wal Mart for about 10 months and did a lot of pricing there. Even though a lot of items are on a rollback or are even reduced in price, they still have a mark-up of at least 25%. Most new items arriving to the stores have a markup of anywhere from 39% to 70%.

    Prices are also mostly driven by local competition. Point in case: When Matrix Reloaded came out, all three Wal Mart stores close to me would only sell it for $19.96 unless a person took in the add from Best Buy then they would price override it for $14.96 or whatever the Best Buy price was. Hastings usually doesn't compete anymore and all new releases go straight to $19.96. They do this because they know Wal Mart across the street will have it at the same price. (I no longer recognize Blockbuster as an option because of their continuing practice or supporting only MAR'd and non-unrated titles.)
     
  19. David Lambert

    David Lambert Executive Producer

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  20. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    Funny, I went to my local Wal-Mart and it seemed that in the front of store display, there were more WS on display
     

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