Blockbuster Seeks Upbeat Theme1 Apr, 2009 By: Erik Gruenwedel
Blockbuster Inc. April 1 said it would begin removing all "sad and depressing" titles from 5,000 corporate stores.
The Dallas-based No. 1 DVD rental company cited the ongoing recession and reduced consumer confidence for the move, which includes removing new releases such as Marley & Me and Seven Pounds, both of which are known for their depressing endings. Stores will be pulling catalog titles over the next week.
"People want to spend their money on something that will make them feel better, not something that will add to their misery," said CEO Jim Keyes in a conference call
The company would shift its marketing focus to upbeat comedies, family films and action titles depicting positive messages.
Keyes predicts the rosier outlook may draw in consumers disillusioned by the economic outlook and eager for escapist entertainment.
"Fun will be synonymous with Blockbuster," he said, "and you will know that when you walk into a Blockbuster, fun is all you will find."