Warner Bros to Pull Harry Potter DVDs and Blu-Rays from Late December

Warner Bros have recently revealed that from December 29th, the studio plan to remove all the Harry Potter DVDs, Blu-Rays and boxsets from the shelves.

The press release states that: “Harry Potter, the #1 motion picture franchise of all time, will soon disappear from shelves, as Warner Bros. stops shipping all Harry Potter theatrical film titles (including Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows™ – Part 2, and Harry Potter: The Complete 8-Film Collection) as of December 29, 2011 (moratorium does not include digital – Electronic Sell-Through & VOD – or games).

While this has been confirmed for the US, it cannot be ruled out that Warner will follow through with this in the UK as well. The films (Years 1 – 6) are being re-released as Ultimate Editions on DVD and Blu-Ray in the UK on November 14th (with the Ultimate Editions having previously only been available in the US).

The press release does not state why Warner are doing this, but it’s believed that they’re employing the Disney Vault tactic, limiting their availability to drive up sales before the films disappear, only to then repackage them as special anniversary editions (or possibly even extended cuts) in the future. Also, after the success Disney had with the recent 3D re-release of The Lion King, it’s quite possible that Warner intend to re-release all the Harry Potter films in 3D. So maybe we can expect a, ‘back on the big screen’ announcement in about ten years time.

This might not be that big a deal for most Harry Potter fans, since they most likely already own the films. Though some would argue that limiting the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, the most successful film of the year, as very bizarre. Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is set to be released in the US on November 11th, which means that fans will have just under seven weeks to purchase the film. It arrives in the UK on December 2nd.

Source: Deadline

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