I must have been living in a bubble called First World Civilization for the last several years because I didn’t realize that Redbox was still a thing, and I just assumed that Chicken Soup for the Soul books only existed in the remaindered sections of Books a Million (does Books a Million still exist? Because Chicken Soup for the Soul should buy it)!
Apparently, they are both still a thing, so much so that Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment has decided to get into the physical media rental business by purchasing Redbox, which installs kiosks in gas stations between the 1998 dial-up ATM machine and the live bait, and rents movies starring John Travolta, Bruce Willis, John Cusack, and Mickey Rooney to impulse buyers stopping by to buy a pack of Marlboro Reds (also Mike Redmond. Apparently, he rents movies from Redbox kiosks at his local Sheetz).
I’m not sure what the business model for Redbox is anymore, except for people with slow internet connections or those on vacation at AirBnBs in remote areas with DVD players but no access to WiFi. Also, Mike. Maybe there’s a high former addicts get out of racing to return a Redbox disc to the kiosk before the late fees kick in.
It’s one of the many purchases Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment had made in recent years. In addition to selling books containing self-help platitudes cribbed from attendees of church potluck dinners, Chicken Soup for the Soul also sells chicken soup for your stomachs (as well as other food items) and pet food! It also owns Crackle, Sony’s failed attempt to get into the streaming market, where you can now watch hundreds of movies that the streaming service bought on VHS at neighborhood yard sales and digitized, and also the entire off-book catalog of Seann William Scott movies. It also owns Screen Media Ventures, LLC., the movie distribution company behind Jeepers Creepers 3 and Elliot the Littlest Reindeer, as well as Sonar Entertainment, the company that produced both seasons of Pierce Brosnan’s The Son for AMC. It turns out that there’s a huge market for stuff that no one wants!
The deal was worth $375 million, although most of that was in assuming Redbox’s over $300 million in debt, and the rest was in Chicken Soup for the Soul stock, certificates of which I’m sure will soon be framed and sold on a third-rate home shopping network program hosted by Kristy Swanson.
via AV Club