Culture

MoviePass blocks access to select AMC theaters

MoviePass blocks access to select AMC theaters”

MoviePass subscribers were turned away from some of the busiest AMC Theaters across the United States.

It's likely because AMC has refused to give MoviePass discounted tickets or other preferential treatment.

MoviePass did not completely sever its relationship with AMC, the nation's largest theater chain. With the subscriber base growing exponentially - Lowe projects that the subscriber base will triple by the end of the summer - MoviePass' influence could increase from a six or seven percent incremental lift to something closer to 20 percent, MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe told Wired.

Is a surprise twist for MoviePass coming out of the Sundance Film Festival where they announced they would be co-acquiring indie movies, such as The Orchard's American Animals, some of the monthly movie ticket's subscribers learned today that their app and cards no longer work at certain AMC venues, i.e. the Empire 25 in New York City.

MoviePass insiders have informed Deadline that the movie ticket service covers over $2M in ticket sales weekly to AMC.

Why it matters: AMC has continually questioned whether or not MoviePass will last over the long-term, according to Verge.

MoviePass exploded in popularity over the holidays, reaching over one million concurrent subscribers in December.

It seems AMC has finally struck a negative chord with MoviePass, though, as the service has begun pulling itself out of ten high-traffic AMC locations.

The CEO of MoviePass' majority shareholder, Ted Farnsworth (of Helios and Matheson), pointed out that this represented "less than 2% of theaters" (AMC has 380 total locations).

"We know that we now represent approximately 62% of AMC's operating income, assuming that AMC is flat year over year".

According to MoviePass, these theaters were seeing a substantial increase in profit due to moviegoers taking advantage of the service. MoviePass wants to participate financially in that bump. "AMC has absolutely no intention - I repeat, no intention - of sharing any - I repeat, any - of our admissions revenue or our concessions revenue", he said.

Going into the acquisition game with MoviePass Ventures, the company hopes that by investing in movies it can share in their box-office success, which will help counter the company having to pay full price for the tickets at most of the theaters where MoviePass subscribers use the app.



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