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Hennepin Co. Library ordered 100 'Purple Rain' DVDs due to high demand


If you went to the Hennepin County Library website right now and added yourself to the wait list for the "Purple Rain" DVD – it would probably be months until you get your hands on it.

Library staff say they've been inundated with interest in Prince-related movies, CDs and books since the prolific artist's death last week, the library system's Division Manager Ali Turner told BringMeTheNews.

At the top of the logjam list is "Purple Rain" on DVD – they have three copies, all are checked out.

And there are 517 requests. (Note that you can borrow a DVD for a week before it needs to be returned.)

100 more DVDs coming

They are working on addressing this.

The library has ordered another 100 copies of the "Purple Rain" DVD and they're waiting for the batch to get in, which should be soon, Turner said. That should alleviate some of the back-up, and means people won't be waiting forever to borrow it.

In addition to staff ordering more Prince items upon his death, they're continuing to monitor demand for CD copies of his albums, printed sheet music, biographies and other related works. If the budget allows, they will try to buy more of those items to put in the library's system.

They also put together a list of items to borrow as a way to remember the icon.

Turner though notes some of these things are out of print, or on back order from stores because of heavy demand. So reinforcements of some might not come soon, or ever.

Some of those not currently available: "Planet Earth," "LotusFlow3r," "3121," "Musicology," "Rainbow Children," "New Power Soul," "Diamonds and Pearls," and more.

One of the 'quickest' jumps in demand

Turner, who has worked for the library for 21 years, said they often see request lists pass more than 1,000 for the new, popular movies when they release on DVD.

"But we don’t generally get this much interest in a back title list as we’ve seen with Prince and demand for his early works," Turner said. Here's a look at requests for some Prince items on April 1, well before Prince's death, compared to April 29.

David Bowie's death did result in a similar jump, though Turner noted library staff said this is the "quickest" response following a rock star's or famous actor's death passing.

How about other libraries?

If you were hoping to snag "Purple Rain" from another library, that might also be tough.

Here are the numbers at Ramsey County libraries:

What the situation is for Dakota County libraries:

And then the Duluth Public Library (which isn't as swollen, but you're not going to borrow copies today):

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