After providing JP with movies for 12 years, Video Underground at 358 Centre St. will close, likely late next month, owner Josiah Simmons told the Gazette.
“It’s that time of the century, I guess,” Simmons told the Gazette last week. “I can’t afford to be open, based on the sales that we’re doing.”
Simmons said that he is planning on a big going-out-of-business sale before Video Underground’s last days in late March or early April.
Simmons bought the video rental store in 2011. It had been struggling for a while when he took ownership, he said, but he knew making it profitable again “was doable,” he said.
“It did better for a little while, but it just dropped off again,” he said.
Evonne Wetzner founded Video Underground in 2002. Its selection focused on independent films, documentaries, foreign films, locally-made films, cult films and film noir. The space at 385 Centre St. includes a small screening room accommodating up to 20 people and there is also a courtyard in the back, which was also occasionally used for screenings.
“One reason is that we often have titles not available online, and I think people also like the social experience of renting a movie locally. JP residents seem to go out of their way to support neighborhood businesses,” Wetzner told the Gazette in 2006.
Video Underground was a frequent winner of “Best Hyde Square Business” in the Gazette’s yearly Best of JP poll.