It’s a sign of the times. Premiere Video in Dallas is packing up its 34,000 DVD movie titles and countless VHS tapes and closing its doors. Owner, Sam Wade, opened his business in 1984.
“It was truly like a Cheers bar without the alcohol,” Wade explained. Bu like many other video stores that closed before it, the customers started going elsewhere for their movies. “the streaming the easy access of buying your own movies has taken the enthusiasm out of rental.”
“It almost signals losing a way of life,” said former employee Heather Hankamer. “We were a part of so many people’s lives. We saw their kids grow up, saw them get married, have babies. He held their hands when their spouses passed away.”
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Hankamer was one of several people in the store Friday evening, surrounded by boxes, as they packed away movies from Blockbuster titles to obscure foreign films.
“This is coming with me. This is coming with me,” joked Wade’s son Christopher, He grew up at Premiere Video. “I don’t remember a time when we I didn’t have a key to the cookie jar.”
For decades, Wade followed a formula for success.
“All you really need to do is love people and love movies. That’s tough,” Wade said choking back tears. “You know movies are movies. People are special.”