Blockbuster Video Goes Live With Mysterious Website
Blockbuster Video has sprung back to life online with a sole page featuring the brand’s iconic logo and the text, “We are working on rewinding your movie,” giving hope to many fans.
It’s been 19 years since the chain of video stores hit its peak with 9,000 locations worldwide — and subsequently came crashing down. But Blockbuster has seen a resurgence in pop culture relevance in recent years after Netflix produced and released one season of a Randall Park-starring sitcom based on its last location a year after a popular documentary, “The Last Blockbuster,” played on the streamer. The last store also released a Super Bowl commercial last month.
Blockbuster’s owner, Dish Network, has not commented on the sudden revival of Blockbuster.com. It has previously said it was not franchising new locations of the former video-store chain, with the one outlet famously remaining in Bend, Oregon. Dish said it would continue pursuing merchandising opportunities related to apparel, board games, and the like.
‘The Last Blockbuster': Why You Can’t Open Your Own Blockbuster Store Anymore
Dish Network bought Blockbuster out of bankruptcy in 2011 when it had 600 stores, down precipitously from its peak of 9,000 in 2004. In 2013, that number had plunged to 300, and Dish announced it would close most of those. By 2017, only 12 stores remained. That dwindled to four a year later, three of which were in Alaska. Those three were then closed in 2019.
Word of the relaunching of the website, however rudimentary it was, began circulating this week and has sparked widespead speculation online, with memories of the video-store customer experience rekindled.
See a variety of reactions to the launching of the website below.
Making it a Blockbuster night in 1993 pic.twitter.com/2MZ8Da8GKz
— Historic Vids (@historyinmemes) March 23, 2023
Could this be true? Is @blockbuster coming back? Unless it's just another streaming service, Fridays evenings will be lit. Something about going to a brick and mortar on a weekend evening browsing their film selection. pic.twitter.com/ZiV9BbZjXQ
— Oscar (@HydeTheCatalyst) March 21, 2023
I think I still owe blockbuster some late fees from 1993
— Matt (@op_matt) March 23, 2023
So I just randomly typed in @blockbuster website and it’s actually active does this mean we’re gonna be time traveling back to the 90s where Friday nights were lit?
— Janette (@Backstreetsmac) March 21, 2023
@blockbuster website has gone live. Did @VancityReynolds buy them? This is a story that would make so much sense and not even shock a soul
— 𝒮𝒽𝑒𝓇 𝑅𝑜𝓈𝓈 (@Sher_is_Fierce) March 17, 2023
Is @blockbuster coming back? I hope so, but it could just be some kind of streaming service. I would rather see the return of brick and mortar stores! #blockbustervideo #physicalmedia #nostalgia pic.twitter.com/ZXbJffPgs0
— Shaun Stackhouse
(@ShaunStackhouse) March 21, 2023
How the Last Blockbuster Store Is Surviving the Pandemic: Nostalgia, Sleepovers and T-Shirt Sales