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Archive for September, 2010

Public Media Works, who a few months ago announced its intention to install tens of thousands of its EntertainmentXpress kiosks over the next few years, has announced a deal with a major retail group. This partnership with Asian American Convenience Store Association (AACSA), which consists of more than 90,000 independent businesses, will place 500 kiosks at AACSA locations.

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Redbox and Walgreens have teamed up again to offer free movies when you buy snacks. For a limited time at participating Walgreens locations, you can receive $3 in Walgreens Register Rewards and two Redbox codes when you spend $10 or more on select snack items. The list of eligible items is after the jump.

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Finding the nearest Redbox kiosk when you’re on the go just got a little easier with the company’s new “location finder” text service. By texting “redbox” to 50101 from your mobile device, users will receive an incoming message requesting a ZIP code. Replying to that message will bring up a list of the Redbox kiosks in the area. Redbox is partnering with software-as-a-service provider Signal to offer the new service.

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Blockbuster’s recent bankruptcy announcement presents its kiosk partner NCR with an awkward dilemma. How do you reassure your customers, the vast majority of which don’t know that you’re just licensing the BB name, that even though “Blockbuster” is going down in flames, “Blockbuster Express” is doing just fine?

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If you are a movie studio, and you know consumers are revolting against your stance against $1 rentals and 28-day delays on companies like Redbox and Netflix, what do you do?

Charge more for the same thing, of course!

OK, to be fair, it is not exactly the same thing. So, what is it that you get for your $30? The ability to watch a movie while it is still in theaters, a month or more before it comes out on DVD. Revolutionary and awesome, right?

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New ReleasesCheck out what is coming to Redbox this week: Iron Man 2, Marmaduke, Frozen, Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky, Legendary, Babies, and The Killer Inside Me.

What will you be watching?

Babies PG
Starring: NA
Genre: Family,Documentary
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky R
Starring: Mads Mikkelsen,Anna Mouglalis
Genre: Drama,Biopic,Drama,Romance
Release Year: 2009
movie details / trailer
Frozen R
Starring: Shawn Ashmore,Emma Bell
Genre: Drama,Drama,Thriller
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Iron Man 2 PG-13
Starring: Robert Downey Jr.,Scarlett Johansson
Genre: Action,Hit Movies,Adventure,Sci-Fi
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Iron Man 2 (Blu-ray) PG-13
Starring: Robert Downey Jr.,Scarlett Johansson,Samuel Jackson
Genre: Action,Adventure
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Legendary PG-13
Starring: John Cena,Patricia Clarkson
Genre: Drama
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Marmaduke PG
Starring: Lee Pace,Judy Greer,David Walliams,William H. Macy,Finley Jacobsen
Genre: Family,Children
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Marmaduke (BLU-RAY) PG
Starring: Lee Pace,Judy Greer,David Walliams,William H. Macy,Finley Jacobsen
Genre: Family,Children
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Metamorphosis R
Starring: Corey Sevier,Irena A. Hoffman,Christopher Lambert
Genre: Horror,Horror,Thriller
Release Year: 2008
movie details / trailer
Super Mario Bros Super Show! The Koopa Kronicles NR
Starring: Mario,Lugi
Genre: Family,Children
Release Year:
movie details / trailer
The Killer Inside Me R
Starring: Casey Affleck,Jessica Alba,Kate Hudson
Genre: Drama,Crime,Drama,Mystery,Thriller
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
The Killer Inside Me (Blu-ray) R
Starring: Casey Affleck,Jessica Alba,Kate Hudson
Genre: Drama,Crime,Drama,Mystery,Thriller
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer

Just wanted to make a quick post in follow-up to the one on Wednesday. As of Thursday morning Blockbuster officially filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, looking to wipe out $900 million in debt and find a way out of the hole they ave been digging for themselves for many years.

In the announcement, Blockbuster said that, for now, all of their 3000 stores would remain open. It is believed, however, that this will not be possible and many more stores will close, as previously reported. This will likely come at the hand of Carl Icahn, renowned investor, who owns about 1/3 of all of Blockbuster’s senior debt, which he recently purchased in order to get a controlling interest in the company. Can Icahn stage a major a turnaround for the company, or is chapter 11 really the end of this story?

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At an investor conference in New York, Disney CEO Bob Iger told investors that he doesn’t believe $1 DVD rentals are hurting its bottom line, and is of no threat to them. Disney plans to continue day-and-date releases to Redbox and other “discount” rental companies for the foreseeable future.

Iger does admit the DVD sales have been down over the past few years, but does not think keeping its titles out of Redbox for a month would have made any real change to that trend.

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It looks like we are getting really close to an end in this dark chapter of Blockbuster’s history. Sources have told the Wall Street Journal that the bankruptcy filing could happen as early as today, and likely by Friday.

Plans including shuttering another 500-800 stores, on top of the 900-1000 stores already slated for closure. This will considerably lighten their financial strain, and give them an opportunity to focus on their digital distribution plans, competing with behemoth Netflix, and soon, Redbox.

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As they announced in July, Netflix has just turned on their Watch Instantly service for Canadians, marking their first foray into an international market.

For now, the service is for streaming only – no DVDs will be delivered to Canada. That could possibly change in the future, but I wouldn’t count on at, as it would require major infrastructure investments that Netflix would probably rather not deal with, especially considering they see the DVD service itself declining as streaming continues to gain acceptance and additional content.

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