Premiere Video to close Mockingbird location, but owner holds out hope for rebirth

Sam Wade chats with a customer at Premiere Video. Wade says loyal customers keep him in business. Photo by Madeline Stevens

Video killed the radio star, and so the internet struck back by killing the video store. At least in its large, brick-and-mortar format. Premiere Video, a neighborhood institution since 1984, has closed its location at 5400 Mockingbird.

A store employee told D Magazine that the business could no longer afford the 5,000-square-foot space. Owner Sam Wade plans to keep his expansive inventory, which D calls “one of the most impressive film libraries in the state.”

That’s likely what kept the store thriving long after major retailers like Blockbuster were taken down in a sign of the times. Premiere Video was packed with more than 25,000 titles, many of them obscure, including old History Channel specials or BBC documentaries.

“We grew the store organically,” Wade told the Advocate in 2011. “We let people tell us what they wanted.”

Wade told The Dallas Morning News that he hopes to take his vast collection and open in a smaller location, if possible. If not, he’ll donate the DVDs, VHS and even a few laser discs to SMU.

Wade first opened as Video Works in Lake Highlands on Skillman a Royal, before moving to the Mockingbird location in the mid-90s.

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It is the end of an era, the last video rental store to close in Dallas, seemingly, as a Google search yields only buy/sell/trade and adult video stores.

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  • topham

    It’s a great resource. I hope it can find a new home.