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There has arguably been no bigger story in the entertainment world this past week than the ongoing saga and struggles of MoviePass. The calamitous series of events kicked off last week when MoviePass suffered an interruption in its service when it ran out of cash and needed to borrow $5 million to keep running. Since then, the service has had to make drastic changes to its model by limiting access to new releases and raising prices to stay afloat. This has all led to a belief that the end is nigh for the popular service. Many have claimed as such, but MoviePass isn't going down without a fight and is letting everyone know that any such claims are premature.
In a defiant statement to let investors and everyone else know that the service is still standing, MoviePass pushed back on talk of its demise while criticizing the industry as a whole. MoviePass noted that without it, the industry would charge what it calls exorbitant prices for tickets and overpriced concessions. MoviePass also cites, as it has in the past, how the industry is naturally going to push back against any kind of disruptive service. The main thing MoviePass points to in the statement is the clear impact it has already had on the industry, and more specifically, the summer movie-going season. MoviePass claims that any growth in ticket sales this summer is at least partially attributable to the service, citing examples like how MoviePass sales accounted for 13% of the opening weekend for Tag and around 12% of the entire theatrical run for RBG.
Further touting its impact, MoviePass claims that 6% of all box office receipts are coming from MoviePass subscribers and that the service is driving attendance in a declining environment. MoviePass believes that this effect on the industry means that the service should be congratulated and supported, not resisted. The statement does acknowledge the recent struggles, but likens them to the struggles of other disruptive services like Uber, AirBNB, Netflix, etc, noting that many of its problems stem from rapid growth.
MoviePass has been incredibly outspoken over the past year, and even in the face of financial struggles, it continues to assert its importance to the industry and refute notions that it is going anywhere anytime soon. MoviePass is taking steps to remain viable, but it remains to be seen if those measures will work. It is great to hear that MoviePass is still so confident because it has 3 million subscribers that benefit from the service and love going to see movies. However this statement focuses on MoviePass's popularity more than how it will stay in business. And since a publicly traded company owns it, MoviePass's struggles are public knowledge. The changes to its business model has many subscribers unhappy, as increased prices and blocking access to blockbusters for the first two weeks of release have altered the value proposition people have come to expect from the service.
There is no question that MoviePass has disrupted the industry, as the existence of its competitors can attest to. Whether MoviePass survives remains to be seen, but the service sounds bullish on its future. For all the movies coming to theaters that you may or may not be able to see with MoviePass, check out our premiere guide.