DreamWorks Animation (NYSE:DWA) is pretty pleased with the debut performance of its animated answer to Pixar's (NASDAQ:PIXR) Finding Nemo. The cartoon Shark Tale moved 6 million units in the home video market in its first seven days swimming in the big retail ocean, according to a press release issued on the company's website.

The company says that of the copies moved, the vast majority -- 5.5 million, in fact -- were DVDs (surprise, surprise, huh?). And that, it seems, is a record for DVD sales of a February release. In this particular case, the concept that it is a qualified record doesn't mean much to me; records like these are always being broken in Hollywood (hey, those releases always need to possess a bit of pizzazz, so I guess I understand). What matters more is the number of units sold and the gross retail-sales revenue take, which was estimated to be $80 million.

The gross domestic box of Shark Tale after it completed its run was nearly $161 million (according to boxofficemojo.com), and since studios like to relate gross video revenue to gross box-office revenue, Shark Tale could be considered to have done well on that basis -- approximately half of the entire domestic run was achieved in seven days. Personally, I long for the day when investors can compare the net profit of one release window to the net profit of another release window, but I doubt we'll ever get such specific information (I can still dream, though).

As I write this, the stock is down about a percentage point on weak volume, so the market doesn't seem too moved by the news -- I suppose it's still on the Shrek high. To be completely fair, however, the video launch of Shark Tale was never expected to approach the heat of that franchise in the least (in fact, it simply couldn't have done so). But the performance of Shark Tale does confirm yet again the seriousness of the company's commitment to competing in the computer-animated arena; make no mistake, it wants to dethrone Pixar. In fact, Disney (NYSE:DIS), Fox (NYSE:FOX), Viacom (NYSE:VIA), and any other appropriate entity you can think of will chase that throne with intense vigor. Investors in DreamWorks Animation who maintain a long-term hold of the stock should see nice results down the road.

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Fool contributor Steven Mallas owns shares of Disney.