Is the last “blockbuster” still open? The truth about the location of the Netflix show

Netflix’s new comedy show blockbuster takes place in the video rental chain’s last surviving store and follows its employees as they try to keep going even as the franchise goes bust.

The show, directed by Vanessa Ramos, is based on events that happened in the real last blockbuster in Bend, Oregon.

Is the last “blockbuster” still open?

Melissa Fumero and Randall Park in Blockbuster
Melissa Fumero as Eliza and Randall Park as Timmy in Blockbuster. The show is loosely based on the last Blockbuster store still open.
Ricardo Hubbs/Netflix

Blockbuster used to be where movie buffs would gather to rent the latest releases or pick up their old favorites for a movie night.

The first Blockbuster store opened in Dallas on October 19, 1985, and the chain expanded both nationally and internationally through the 1990s and early 2000s. At its peak, there were 9,094 Blockbuster stores worldwide, but with the advent of streaming services like Netflix, demand for video rental stores quickly began to decline.

The Bend, Oregon store became the latest blockbuster in March 2019, following the closure of two of the chain’s locations in Australia, and the store is still open.

Ken Tisher owns the store and is able to sell merchandise bearing the brand’s name through a licensing agreement with Dish Network, the company that owns Blockbuster. Items such as hats, shirts and even blockbuster themed gift packs are available in store and on the store’s website.

Bend’s blockbuster was featured in the documentary The last blockbuster and has also appeared in shows like The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

The Last Blockbuster store also houses several Russell Crowe movie memorabilia that were donated to the store from a Blockbuster in Anchorage, Alaska, which closed in July 2018.

The Anchorage store originally received gifts from iconic Crowe films, like his waistcoat Les Miserables, by John Oliver as part of a segment Last week tonight in 2018.

Other items gifted to the store include the jockstrap, robe, and shorts that Crowe wore Cinderella man and his hood from the 2010 film Robin Hood.

The latest Blockbuster has stayed open against all odds, with the shop even keeping all of its employees busy during the COVID-19 pandemic, and in 2020 the shop was listed on Airbnb for guests to rent for a ’90s-style getaway.

Now with Netflix blockbuster, The Bend store will once again be in the public eye, although the show is set in a fictional Michigan store.

The series stars Randall Park as Timmy, the Blockbuster store boss, Melissa Fumero as his colleague Eliza, and Tyler Alvarez, Madeleine Arthur, Olga Merediz, and Kamaia Fairburn as Carlos, Hannah, Connie, and Kayla, who are all employees of the business.

blockbuster is now available on Netflix.

The last blockbuster
This photo taken on July 26, 2020 shows the interior of the last remaining Blockbuster store in Bend, Oregon.
Andrew MARSZAL/AFP via Getty Images Is the last “blockbuster” still open? The truth about the location of the Netflix show

Rick Schindler

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