If you have trouble finding a cassette of "The Hunt for Red October" after its home-video release Thursday, it may be due to a retailer protest over the high price set by Paramount. Some store owners are buying fewer copies than they normally do of a new hit movie.

Peter Margo, executive vice president of the eastern Palmer Video chain, said that Paramount fell 50,000 to 75,000 copies short of its initial sales goal - said to be at least 400,000. That would amount to a loss for Paramount of at least $2.5 million.