Passion of the Christ DVD Hits Region 8

August 31, 2004 -- Posted at 4:57 p.m. CDT

JONESBORO -- It caused a nationwide stir and broke box office records. Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ is out on DVD Tuesday, and folks in Region 8 couldn't wait to get their hands on it.

"We're constantly selling them. I sell probably around four or five about every ten minutes," said Kimberly Scott, a Hastings Book and Music Store employee.

With about 300 copies of The Passion of the Christ in stock, Jonesboro's Hastings store is keeping busy. "We've had people buying two and three at a time, they've been buying them for themselves, as gifts, things like that," said Scott.

And shoppers had many reasons for wanting to own a copy of the record-breaking film. Jo-Ann Daley spent Tuesday morning shopping for the movie, "I heard a lot of people had an experience from seeing it, and I've had an experience in my life from reading about Christ and having his Holy Spirit come into my life, but I wanted to see exactly what he went through for us and so that's why I want to buy it."

Most of the people said they hadn't seen the film in the theatre, and that was part of the reason they wanted to buy their own copy on VHS or on DVD.

"From what people have said, it's good and it's interesting and moving, so you know I wanted to see it," said Jason Lewis as he rented The Passion of the Christ.

"There such a hype on it, I was just kind of wanting to see what it's all about. I wanted to see if it truly was just as emotional as everybody says it is," said video renter Alisa Gunn.

And it wasn't just the church crowd lining up for copies. "I've had young guys, young females and old guys and old females, so it's a wide generation," said Scott.

But how will the graphic violence depicted in the film play at home?   "I'm kind of nervous about it actually. I've got two children who want to see it and I just don't know if I'm ready for them to see that. I want to see it before they see it. I'm really looking forward to it, I hope it's as good as everybody says it is," said Gunn.

Hastings isn't the only store that's stocking the film. Sam's Club nationwide also pre-sold the movie in cases of 50 full-screen DVD's to churches and religious organizations. Surprisingly enough though, the Sam's Club here in Jonesboro reported that no church or organization in Region 8 purchased the cases.