By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican
After a week of sales, the “Heaven is for Real” DVD is selling well enough that Sony Pictures is happy.
Todd Burpo, who heads the family from Imperial on which the book and movie are based, said he’s been told by Sony spokespersons they are pleased with how it’s selling.
The movie tells the story of the Burpo family whose young son and brother, Colton, miraculously recovers from a near-death experience in surgery with vivid memories of his visit to heaven in 2003.
A Sony Pictures spokesperson said they do not release figures on DVD/blu-ray sales.
Locally, Alco store sold out of the DVD after its arrival last week. Steve’s Video and Kwik Stop have it for rent locally.
The Heaven is for Real Ministries office in the Moreland Insurance building did not receive their shipment of “Heaven is for Real” DVDs last week, but were expecting them this week.
Imperial footage seen only on Wal-mart special package
In March, a Sony Pictures film crew spent a whole day in Imperial filming for possible inclusion in a special features section included with the DVD.
Burpo said Tuesday that local footage is only available, however, by purchasing an exclusive combo pack at Wal-mart stores or from its online site.
He said Wal-mart is such a big DVD/blu-ray seller that a deal was struck with Sony that the major retailer get exclusive rights to the special combo pack. The Imperial footage is included on a separate “bonus disk” within the combo pack, Burpo said.
The 13-minute bonus disk on Imperial, titled “Heaven is for Real 11 Years Later,” includes footage of downtown Imperial, the IVFD fire station, several businesses, Crossroads Wesleyan Church where Burpo is pastor and interviews with all members of the Burpo family.
After last week, the “Heaven is for Real” movie has grossed over $91 million since its release in April. It is now showing in several international markets, as well.
The book, on which the movie is based, is printed now in 39 languages and has sold more than 10 million copies.