Popcorn bucket merchandise is the pinnacle of luxury

In my day, tracking fan merchandise was a task that had to be done in person. Whether I'm playing tricks on a crowd of 7-year-olds getting their ears pierced in Clare or giving myself a pep talk before heading out into the dark, intimidating hot topics, t-shirts from my favorite bands and artists are only available in stores Or a concert. Even so, promoting merchandise for the concert was a headache—but it was all worth it to prove my loyalty to my fan base. But now, die-hard fans have a new, unexpected way to express their unwavering commitment to their favorite musicians: popcorn buckets.

The $500-plus seats on Taylor Swift's Eras tour and Beyoncé's Renaissance World Tour are regularly sold out, with many fans being sold out. Enter: concert movies. "Swift" premiered on October 13 and grossed $123.5 million at the global box office during its opening weekend, with a Rotten Tomatoes score of 99%. Renaissance: The Beyoncé Movie will be released on December 1st. While fans were excited to finally get the visual they'd been waiting for, the popcorn bucket also unexpectedly became a hot topic of conversation.

Taylor Swift Tour Movie includes three AMC-exclusive merchandise options. Provided by AMC

AMC is offering an exclusive promotion for Swift moviegoers: a souvenir mug with a tall drink for $9.99, a plastic popcorn bucket and jumbo popcorn for $14.99, or a chic pink popcorn can and Large popcorn (what else?) costs $19.89 tax. Bey is following suit, and AMC will be selling exclusive Renaissance popcorn cans featuring her signature silver silhouette for $22.99, complete with jumbo popcorn.

I'm sorry, but as someone who just used Venmo to pay my friend $29.49 for a (1!) movie ticket at the AMC theaters and secretly ate my own food to avoid the overpriced deals, I can say this means Some people are paying nearly $50 to watch a concert movie while eating popcorn from a bucket with their favorite people's faces on it. By my fangirl math, if that makes sense financially, you're either a Nippo or a Daddy Warbucks (wait, is Daddy Warbucks a Nippo?).

"I don't know what I'm going to do with them. One day I'll figure out a use for them, but will I get rid of them? No."

However, some believe the popcorn merchandise is just a sign of Taylor and Beyoncé's star power. "[The popcorn bucket] has a unique, kitsch factor. It's unexpected, which makes it even more popular with fans." Bustle's entertainment writer, self-proclaimed "merch king" and certified Swiftie Jack Wei Jake Viswanath said. "If it's out there, if it's about Taylor Swift or Beyoncé, my instinct is to get it and then worry about the money and how to actually use it later." He hasn't figured out what to do with his pink popcorn yet pot, but consider using it as a planter.

Marina Watts, Bustle's entertainment news and strategy editor, opted for souvenir cups instead of popcorn buckets but hasn't yet stocked the desk with pens and highlighters as she originally planned. "Do I think every artist can do this and get away with it? Probably not," she said. "But as a 'I don't have money to go to the Eras Tour' guy, I was kind of like, 'What the hell. Just buy soda cups,' and if you're already going to buy popcorn, what's that extra $5?"

People are clearly willing to splurge on these artists for more than the extra $5. I mean, if any singer released a branded menstrual cup or transitional sunglasses, I bet there would be a line down the block at every CVS filled with Swifties and BeyHive members waiting for them. Then again, these two projects are at least a little more useful.


But perhaps the appeal of the popcorn bucket merchandise is that it's essentially a coveted, weird item that fans love to joke about. TikToker @1989vinyl sarcastically explained to her followers that the bucket can be used as a trash can, a place to store all your Eras Tour bracelets, an ice bucket, or even an urn. Another Swift filled her popcorn bucket with mini disco balls in the name of home decor.

If you're creative, the options are endless. I recommend hauling it to 7/11 for the next "Bring Your Own Cup Day" or if you need to humanely capture a rat and release it back into the wilderness or something, put it somewhere easily accessible. You never know what might happen!

So go ahead and carry your popcorn bucket merchandise with pride. If you change your mind, be aware that people will resell them online for $60 or even $90. If you find yourself in financial trouble after paying for your fans, you can find solace in the secondary market. But for some, this kind of community can't be put at a price.

“I don’t know what to do with them,” Viswanath said. "One day I'll figure out a use for them, but will I get rid of them? No, I'd rather get rid of my eldest son."