Christian retail stores helped make Courageous the best-selling DVD of all in the country in its first week of release.

The faith-based cop drama from church-based Sherwood Pictures, makers of the hit marriage drama Fireproof, topped the Nielsen VideoScan First Alert sales chart, for the week ending Jan. 22, ahead of the George Clooney political drama, The Ides of March.

Courageous performed well at many Christian stores, which had offered a variety of pre-buy special offers for as low as $14.97 on the recommended $24.99 price. The Exclusive Collector’s Edition for Christian stores includes more than an hour of extra content not available in the general market version.

The movie was the release week’s best-selling product for Parable stores, where Sales and Marketing Manager Randy Maricle said that sales were “very strong” online and in-store the first week it released.

Counter mat displays were used to promote pre-buys. “Since the release we have tabletop displays with all Courageous products, an endcap with the DVD and book products and large window banners,” said Jeff Bruenning, Parable’s merchandising manager. “This in-store promotion has been very successful for our stores to create great displays.”

Sales have been strong, too, for Munce Group stores, said President Kirk Blank. In addition to selling about 13,000 DVDs, ancillary products had done well. “T-shirts and books have done the best,” he said. “The Courageous novelization (Tyndale House Publishers) and The Resolution for Men (B&H Books) are in our top 10 and have been for months.”

Lorraine Valk, co-owner of Banner Books Parable Christian Store of St. Joseph in St. Joseph, Ind., said that sales seemed “a bit slower” than for Fireproof in 2009, “but still very strong. We have it prominently displayed up front with the books.”

At The Scroll Christian bookstore in Tyler, Texas, Manager David Rooker reported sales of around 260 the first week. “For most product that would be outrageously exciting, but with a buy-in of 1,000 pieces, I was expecting more initial excitement,” he said. “We are selling it for $17.97 now. No matter how much we make it won’t be much of a moneymaker.”