Why is Zoolander So Popular on iTunes?

iTunes users must be hypnotized by his “blue steel” gaze, because Zoolander has been hanging out in the Top 10 movies purchased on iTunes. Wait, what? An eight-year-old comedy is more popular than Ratatouille, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, and High School Musical (parts 1 and 2)?

Since Apple keeps its sales figures locked in an iron fist, it’s hard to figure out exactly what to make of this, but either Ben Stiller is HUGE with iTunes users, or Apples sales are so low that it doesn’t take much to make it into the top 10. Zoolander isn’t even in the top 100 iTunes rentals.

I had noticed the film poking its well-coiffed head into the Top 10 for a while now, so I decided to keep track. Here are some screen caps taken of the Apple sales chart over the last week.

March 14, 2008
March 17, 2008

March 19, 2008
March 20, 2008

Enchanted, No Country for Old Men and Dan in Real Life make sense, but after that, things get odd. There’s Zoolander hanging out with Mark Wahlberg’s dud Shooter. Even the pre-crazy Lindsay Lohan’s old film Mean Girls makes a cameo.

For comparison, the digital download of Zoolander ranks #339 on Amazon Unbox, and the Zoolander DVD ranks #1,830. The film is also absent from this week’s Billboard’s top DVD sales. People aren’t even BitTorrenting it; Zoolander isn’t in the top ten most popular DVDrips (for the week of March 18).

So why is Zoolander so darn popular on iTunes? We asked two different people at Apple, but neither responded.

Perhaps this is a mystery only a model can solve.