Last Alaska Blockbusters set to close, leaving 1 store in US

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Blockbuster Video officially went out of business years ago, but three stores actually managed to hold out and continue operations in the United States, until this week.

With the shuttering of the two Alaska locations, that leaves one lone Blockbuster in Bend, Oregon, as the last holdout of the company's years-long demise.

Alaska's final two Blockbuster video stores will rent out their last movies and close up shop at the end of the week, management announced Thursday - leaving the USA with a single remaining location. One location on DeBarr Road in Anchorage and another store in Fairbank will be closing down on Monday. Some take photos, she said. Its fellow OR stores, in Redmond and Sandy, have closed in recent months.

"We will miss all of you!"

Every Tuesday morning Harding buys the newest titles to stock the store.

"We were very up front with them, and they said, 'That's OK, we want you to have it anyway, ' " he said.

She credited the store's "amazing, loyal customers" for the store's longevity.

"Daily, we have people coming in and going, 'Oh my gosh. you're a Blockbuster".

The owner of the Alaska stores had told Deadline that the stores remained profitable, but decided that renewing the lease on the stores didn't make financial sense.

By April 2017, 10 stores existed across the entire US.


The news was announced to Alaskans on Blockbuster Alaska's Facebook page.

"These are the last two Blockbuster stores in Alaska that survived and it is sad to say goodbye to our dedicated customers".

"It just breaks your heart, you know?" According to The Oregonian, the stores' manager Kevin Daymude will not offer any rentals beyond Sunday night. The one in Texas closed shop a year ago. And since then, its store count has continued to slowly dwindle. Stores in Wasilla, North Pole and Soldotna only closed earlier this year.

The closures come despite a campaign from HBO host John Oliver to increase business at the stores by donating a jockstrap worn by Russel Crowe in the 2005 film "Cinderella Man" as a tourist attraction.

Blockbuster was the king of movie and video game rentals in 1990s. By 2013, there were only 13 stores left in America.

At the peak of its popularity in 2004, Blockbuster boasted around 84,300 employees around the world. After all, some argue, why go to all the trouble if you can just rent a movie from your couch?

The company has faced fierce competition from online video streaming services such as Netflix and filed for bankruptcy protections in 2010.

After that, things kept going downhill.

In its heyday, Blockbuster had 15 stores in Alaska, Daymude said.

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