As Blockbuster Prepares To Close, Fans Line Up To Stock Video Libraries
TEMPLE CITY (CBSLA.com) — As the retail giant Blockbuster prepares to fade to black, customers are preparing to line up to stock their video libraries.
KCAL9’s Melanie Woodrow went to a Blockbuster in Temple City and found eager shoppers.
She reported customers like Linda Martinez and her daughter Krystal Guzman were there not to rent, but to buy — and to add lots of titles to their collection.
“I’m doing my own Blockbuster in my own house I’m getting so many movies,” Martinez said.
Blockbuster tweeted customers that as it begins to close stores around the country, Saturday will be the last day to rent videos.
Stores will reopen Nov. 14 for a huge liquidation sale.
“I’ll be a Blockbuster fan all my life. I’m young, I’m 22, but no matter how old I get I’ll still be a Blockbuster fan,” Guzman said.
The Dallas-based video retail chain built its fan base beginning in 1985. At one time, Blockbuster boasted 9,000 stores and more than 60,000 employees.
In 2010, business bottomed out — competition from rival Netflix didn’t help — and Blockbuster filed for bankruptcy.
Dish Network, the satellite television provider, bought the video retailer one year later for $320 million.
In the end, Blockbuster had trouble keeping up with digitally streaming movies online, on-demand services and kiosks such as Redbox.
Some customers never got out of the Blockbuster habit, though.
“I’m 62 years old and I like [getting videos] the old-fashioned way,” Martinez said.
Woodrow said if you have a Blockbuster card, don’t throw it away just yet. Fifty stores, mostly in Alaska and Texas, will remain open as independent licensed franchises.