To rent a movie, you might go to a Blockbuster, an American firm that, by the middle of the 2000s, had one of the biggest video rental networks in the world. Originally established in 1985 under the name Blockbuster Videos, the company has gone through a number of name changes since its inception.
Context and meaning
With almost 10,000 locations and one of the largest purchase prices in history ($8.4 billion when sold to Viacom in 1995), Blockbuster was more than just a brand in the 2000s.
Although the company’s primary operations ended in 2010, some of the stores remained open until 2014, and the Blockbuster brand is still active today with only one location in Bend, Oregon.
The concept of Blockbuster is unfamiliar to me.
In the early 1990s, an American corporation by the name of Blockbuster rose to the top of the movie rental industry and remained there for more than two decades. It was David Cook who first paved the way by launching his own business.
Despite an astonishing number of logo redesigns conducted during its existence, the American corporation involved in the movie and video game rental services has maintained a strong visual identity.
1985 – 1987
The original Blockbuster logo debuted in 1985 and was used for the next several years without any changes. A stylized ticket sits over a solid blue backdrop, and the words “Blockbuster Videos” are inscribed across the top of the logo in bright yellow caps.
1987 – 1996
In 1987, the firm changed its name to Blockbuster Video and its logo was updated to include the new name of the brand printed in a slightly different shade of yellow, one that was more like to lemon-yellow. All the extra text was taken out of the logo, which allowed the design to be streamlined.
During a brief period in 1996, the firm changed its name to Blockbuster Entertainment, with the logo and ticket design remaining the same save for the new name. However, the new emblem employed a far more vibrant and striking hue of yellow than its predecessor.
1996 – 2014
A new emblem was needed after a few months when the corporation changed its name to Blockbuster. The strong geometric sans-serif type and vivid yellow colour used before on the solid blue ticket have now begun to seem more orange. The orange colour of the lettering was also used for the small interior frame of the emblem.
2011 – Today
In 2011, the Blockbuster logo was updated again; the overall look and feel were preserved, but the colour scheme was made more vibrant and glossy by the inclusion of gradients and subtle metallic tones. The new logo is bold and modern while remaining true to the brand’s heritage.
Style of text and hue
The main Blockbuster logo has powerful, uppercase writing in a constricted but sturdy geometric sans-serif typeface with angular glyph outlines. This emblem uses a combination of ITC Machine Medium and Winner Sans Compressed Extra Bold, two fonts that are rather similar to one other.
Blockbuster’s visual identity has always had a blue and yellow colour scheme, however the specific shades of each have evolved over time. The latest iteration is the coldest to date, but the components’ contrast has never looked more striking.