"Passion" Hits Store Shelves

Mel Gibson's film The Passion of the Christ made hundreds of millions of dollars in theaters worldwide. Today, the controversial movie was on store shelves, and some store managers say the DVDs and video tapes have been selling very well.

Before the DVD was available, many people had it reserved and today they finally got their hands on the movie they've been waiting for.

"A lot of people that I talked to said there were scenes that really upset them to see it period," said Nancy Clayton, who waited till the film came out in stores. Moviegoers like her waited months for the release and, due to its graphic content, wanted to view it in the privacy of their own homes.

"We could stop it and start it back when we wanted to, so that's best," Clayton said.

Now that Gibson's film has hit the shelves, retailers are expecting it to be one of their biggest sellers. In Savannah's Media Play alone, more than 100 copies were reserved. Retailers also say it's more than the film that viewers are passionate about.

"I would say that 20 percent of the folks that came in today haven't even seen the movie yet, just the hype," said Media Play's Jonathan Mullis. "They've come in buying DVDs of the movie they haven't even seen and buying the sound track because they assume it's going to be good based on how well the movie's done."

Even thought it's been more than six months since the film hit theaters, retailers expect the home video release to reignite the film's popularity and bring even in even bigger profits.

Since the release of the film, The Passion of the Christ has made more than $600 million worldwide. Now that it's out in the stores, there's no telling how much more money this film will make.

Reported by: Nicole Teigen, nteigen@wtoc.com