MoviePass to raise prices, limit access to blockbuster films

Emmett Rice
August 1, 2018

It's not clear how "limited" those films will be to MoviePass users.

To make sure that the company could move ahead, but only on a short term basis, last Friday MoviePass borrowed $5 million from a hedge fund in the form of a $6.2 million Demand Note.

The company confirmed in a statement that that the subscription price will raise from $10 to $15 sometime in the next 30 days.

As a service, MoviePass is proving popular with moviegoers although it struggles to rake enough cash in to pay its bills.

MoviePass stopped working last Thursday night too because the company's owner, Helios and Matheson Analytics, ran out of money, according to my report for the Deseret News.

In addition to the price change, MoviePass subscribers soon won't be able to use the service to buy tickets to big movies during the first two weeks of the movie's release. The app went through a series of confusing changes and overhauls over the past week that concluded with users being unable to view any movie listings on the app except for those from e-ticketing theaters. Shares of AMC Entertainment Holdings (AMC.N), the biggest USA movie theater chain which offers a rival ticket service, jumped 7.5 percent in midday trading.

The company said it made the decision "to both limit cash burn and stay loyal to its mission to empower the smaller artistic film communities", according to BuzzFeed.

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Currently, it's reported the MoviePass app is showing users: "There are no more screenings at this theater today".

"We ask for your understanding and vocal support during this time, as we continue to fundamentally change an industry that hasn't evolved much in years", it said.

In an all-hands meeting on Monday, MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe announced that the upcoming big releases "Christopher Robin" and "The Meg" would not be available to subscribers, a source familiar with the matter told Business Insider. As a movie ticket can cost anywhere from $8-$20, you can see why the company is running out of money.

The "implementation" of unspecified "additional tactics to prevent abuse of the MoviePass service" are also cited.

MoviePass already did that with the new "Mission Impossible" movie, which opened this past weekend.

At some theaters, it is common to see long lines with people holding red MoviePass cards, which subscribers can use to charge a movie to the service.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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