'Duck Dynasty's' 'Duck the Halls' Album Heading for Sales Gain Amidst Phil Robertson Controversy

The controversy swirling around comments made by "Duck Dynasty" star Phil Robertson hasn't seemingly negatively impacted the sales of the show's hit album "Duck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas."

The holiday effort from the smash A&E series, which features Robertson duetting with country music legend George Strait, may sell around 125,000 in the week ending Dec. 22 -- so suggest industry forecasters. The set debuted at No. 1 on the Top Country Albums chart in November and is currently in the top 10 on the Billboard 200 chart.

That forecast of 125,000 would mark a 16% gain for the year's second-biggest selling Christmas album, which sold 108,000 last week (ending Dec. 15), according to Nielsen SoundScan.

(Most albums are on course to earn a sales gain this week -- so the increase for "Duck the Halls" should not be seen as unusual. Sales are up across the board thanks to holiday shopping and last-minute gift purchases.)

The top selling album of the coming week will likely be Beyonce's new self-titled set, with around 260,000 copies. "Duck the Halls" will probably end up around No. 5 on the chart.

To date, "Duck the Halls" has sold 575,000. (Kelly Clarkson's "Wrapped In Red" is the year's biggest holiday album, with 578,000.)

In an interview with January's GQ magazine, Robertson discussed his views on "sin," comparing homosexuality with bestiality. Yesterday (Dec. 18), that comment, among others, started to spread through social networks like wildfire. A&E then released a statement, saying that they were "extremely disappointed to have read" Robertson's quotes, and had placed him "under hiatus from filming indefinitely."

The album was released on Oct. 29 by 4 Bears/EMI Nashville/Universal Music Group Nashville. It is unknown if Robertson's comments will alter any promotional activity planned for the album this week.

Spokespersons for both Universal Music Group Nashville and its parent company, Universal Music Group, have yet to respond to a request for comment from Billboard.

"Duck the Halls" is currently at No. 6 on the Billboard 200 chart, spending its seventh consecutive week in the top 10. The album spent four straight weeks at No. 1 on the Top Country Albums chart.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboardbiz

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