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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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We have witnessed a lot of changes in the movie industry over the past few years, with this latest casualty coming (mainly) as a result of Redbox’s strong performance in the DVD sector, and the continued dominance of Netflix in both DVDs and digital distribution.
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The question remains: Can Blockbuster come out of this a stronger company and survive for many more years? Will they be a major target for acquisition by another company (Comcast?)? Or, will they just wither away and die, being remembered by some as a major stepping-stone in entertainment, and by others as a company who will not be missed due to bad experiences, late fees, etc…?

I personally believe – even with a lot of damage in recent years – that the Blockbuster brand is still just too valuable to disappear entirely. An acquisition is likely, I think, and that will keep Blockbuster’s name living on for awhile to come.

What are you thoughts? Is is good riddance, or fond memories? What do you think the future of Blockbuster will be? Let us know in the comments…

[via wsj]

18 Responses to “Blockbuster Bankruptcy Just Days Away, 800 More Stores To Close”

  1. Member [Join Now]

    Blockbuster will fade into media history. I don’t think the brand is that strong.

  2. Visitor [Join Now]
    Marc [visitor]

    I am a Blockbuster fan. I like to go to the store and browse the movies. Call me old fashion (or not lazy). I feel like they would be much better off if they had drastically changed their policies to what consumers want like $1 a day rentals. They need to do something that can set them apart instead of just playing catch up. Their online rental business, and the ability to take them back to the stores vs mailing them and waiting is a step in the right direction. They already are $1 a day you just have to pay $5 for the first 5 days. This needs to be changed. Hell make it 89c a day for a promotion or something!

  3. Visitor [Join Now]
    rb [visitor]

    I still think Blockbuster Express, while operated by NCR, can make a good go of it. The Blockbuster name recognition is there. I think customers will forget any past problems they had with Blockbuster b&m stores when they can pay $1 for new releases from BBExpress. I’m not sure why BBExpress doesn’t look into putting some kiosks in say Burger King, etc. Even with Blockbuster filing bankruptcy, etc., I wish only the best for BBExpress. :-)

  4. Visitor [Join Now]
    Ben [visitor]

    If they can keep the BBExpress kiosks open and increase their presence around the country (and increase the selection of popular new/old movies)- that will help them compete with the likes of Redbox (who mostly offer new releases). As for their brick and mortar stores, decreasing their number will help reduce overhead, but I’m not sure if people will be willing to drive further just to get to a store. Also, they need to decrease their cost-per-rental to a more competitive rate, people like me just aren’t digging the current $5 rentals – even though they claim it’s a $1 per day and it can be kept all week, i’d like to be credited the difference if i decide to return it early – or something like that…otherwise i’ll be shorted ‘X’ number of dollars unless i keep the movie for the full week and risk forgetting to return it – thus incurring late fees.

  5. Visitor [Join Now]
    will [visitor]

    I suspect there will be a prepackaged Chapter 11, and they may even emerge, but will go BK again in relatively short order and liquidate. There’s no place anymore for a bricks-and-mortar video store chain with a coast-to-coast presence, much less one with a toxic reputation like Blockbuster. I don’t give BBE much of a chance to succeed, either, because Redbox owns the dominant mindshare in the kiosk realm. BBE is mostly relegated to secondary locations that do much less volume. I suspect NCR will pull the plug sooner rather than later after figuring out it’s a mature market with no room for a second player.

  6. Visitor [Join Now]
    Mike [visitor]

    I never rented anything from Blockbuster but I’ve bought lots of previously viewed DVDs there, those deals will be missed. Where will I go now? To a Redbox kiosk and spend five bucks on a used, scratched disc with no cover art? Hell no. I guess the studios will get what they want, I’ll be buying every movie I want brand new (and with my luck, the deals will be gone).

  7. Visitor [Join Now]
    will [visitor]

    Big Lots has lots of good $3 titles, all of them brand new, but they’re catalog titles, not recent releases for the most part.

  8. Member [Join Now]

    So that’s what it sounds like when the shoe drops…the Chap 11 has now been filed.

  9. Visitor [Join Now]
    Jamie [visitor]

    They will make it out of this Ch 11 only to file again in 3-5 years tops and then be gone forever.

  10. Visitor [Join Now]
    tinybrat [visitor]

    Its a done deal. Blockbuster says they are keeping their stores open, not a chance. Icahn will force them to restructure, and in doing so, will have to close at least 1/4 of their stores. There is no way to re-coupe money by keeping the bottom performing stores open. They also say they are going to focus more on their mail subscription service, which hints at them closing b&m stores.

    My opinion: Blockbuster will not be around by 1/1/2013. You heard it here first!

  11. Member [Join Now]

    I don’t think BB is too big to not end. Look at Hollywood Video. I agree with tinybrat, by 2013 they will be no more

  12. Visitor [Join Now]
    Farva [visitor]

    Blockbuster has no one to blame but themselves.

    • Visitor [Join Now]
      Matt Falcon [visitor]

      Well, they kinda have Redbox and Netflix to blame, for showing the world how movie rental should be done… SHAME ON YOU Netflix and Redbox, how dare you come up with a more streamlined and efficient business plan with new, innovative distribution methods! You’re killing the old giant! >:(

      Just sucks that Blockbuster never caught up.

  13. Visitor [Join Now]
    Rita [visitor]

    My sympathies to all the Blockbuster fans out there. I had to switch to RedBox because the prices were better and no waiting in line for someone to fine your record, your movie.

    That said, I was wondering if Blockbuster will be selling off the inventory at its locations in the southern NH area.

    –Rita Wilde

  14. Visitor [Join Now]
    Mari [visitor]

    I love blockbuster. I also use Netflix and even redbox. I love movies more then watching tv. I love that I can take my mailed rental in to the store for a free movie. Maybe that spoiled us since I have heard many people wishing they could return the BB express to the stores and maybe get a discount if they chose to rent another movie that night. I know they are different companies but people want easy of transactions, especially when your on your way home from a bad day at work and just want to get home and relax.

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