Video rentals stores have taken another giant step towards total extinction as video rental chain Family Video announced the closure of all remaining stores. The news follows an earlier closure of 200 stores last fall due to the pandemic that is severely affecting business, and in a new press release Family Video has now confirmed that they will close the 250+ remaining stores the next after theirs Have cleared inventory with bulk liquidation Sales.
“Although we have been exposed to digital competition from Netflix and others for years, nothing has been as devastating to our business as Covid-19,” the press release said.
Kieth Hoogland, CEO of Highland Ventures, added, “We are very grateful that we have had many family movie nights and would like to thank the socialmediagossips of Toledo and our incredible staff for their longstanding support and service.”
Family Video is headquartered in Illinois and primarily based in the Midwest. However, in its heyday, the video rental chain consisted of hundreds of locations across the US and Canada. Because Blockbuster was so prominent in larger cities, most of the Family Video locations were set up in rural areas and small or medium-sized cities. Although the proliferation of streaming services has destroyed the video rental industry, Family Video has been one of the few establishments that has been held onto.
Family video was features in Strange things Season 3, which ended when Steve and Robin looked for jobs in the video business on the final episode. It appears that Family Video will be making a return in season 4, as Mia Hawk was spotted filming in her Family Video vest. The official Family Video website currently sells the exact same vest, and they also have a Hawkins-themed Family Video t-shirt. It is not clear how long these items will be available. But Strange things will keep the name alive in the spirit.
Meanwhile, Blockbuster hasn’t entirely gone, although it has gotten very close. After a series of closings in 2019, the company only has interests in one remaining blockbuster location in Bend, Oregon. That’s quite a decrease from when the company once hosted over 9,000 stores in the US and abroad. As the last remaining blockbuster in the world, the Oregon store has become a tourist attraction that has helped keep its doors open during these uncertain times. Last August, it was listed as an Airbnb rental for a 90s-style getaway that included a night of movies, snacks, and video games.
While the focus is on video games rather than movies, GameStop also suffered heavy losses over the past year. The company closed 462 branches last year after several hundred more branches were closed in the previous year. There are currently no plans to pull the plug on GameStop as the company is looking to release the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 to drive sales into the new year. Of course, it probably doesn’t help that the limited inventory of these consoles made them unavailable in most stores.
For better or worse, streaming has pretty much taken over the home video business, and it’s not exactly a big surprise if another major rental chain bites the dust. Even so, there will always be socialmediagossips who prefer physical media. Perhaps classic video stores can return one day after things get back to normal. Either way, you can check out the liquidation sales on Family Video while you’re around official website.