While MoviePass and its many triumphs and tribulations were taking up a lot of the headlines last year, some other movie theatergoing subscription services hit the scene and began growing with less fanfare. One of those services was AMC Stubs A-List from AMC, the nation's largest theater chain. AMC Stubs A-List has been steadily growing since its launch last June and has now passed 700,000 subscribers.
AMC Theatres’ Stubs A-List program passed the 700,000 subscriber milestone after adding 100,000 new subscribers in January and February of this year, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The service has been a hit for AMC and the chain said that since it was launched, it has resulted in 14 million trips to AMC Theatres, including the friends and families of subscribers.
AMC’s CEO and President Adam Aaron spoke to the benefits the Stubs A-List program is bringing to its business by highlighting the fact that members are seeing more movies than they ever have before the program and that they are seeing movies more than once. More importantly, Stubs A-List subscribers are bringing along friends and family members who aren’t subscribers and are paying full price. One imagines there are probably some benefits to that on the concession end as well.
The rate of growth of AMC Stubs A-List has well exceeded AMC’s goals because when it was rolled out last June, the chain was hoping to hit 500,000 subscribers in a year’s time. The subscriber base is now well past that with several months to spare. It may not be the rocket-like growth that MoviePass had prior to its woes, but it is still steady, way ahead of AMC’s goals and, according to AMC, more sustainable.
What makes the 700,000-subscriber mark and the 100,000 new members added in the first two months of the year especially impressive is that January and February weren’t exactly stacked with must-see blockbusters. Nevertheless, 100,000 people were still interested in a way to see more movies and saw enough value in AMC Stubs A-List to sign up.
This continued growth also seems like a positive sign, although the long-term will be more telling, that its recent price increases haven’t diminished interest in the service. In November, AMC announced that it was raising the monthly price for AMC Stubs A-List from $19.95 a month for three movies a week in any format to either $21.95 or $23.95 depending on where you live. Your state dictates which of the three price tiers you have to pay.
There is always a tipping point for consumers when it comes to price and perceived value; judging by Stubs A-List’s continued growth, AMC hasn’t hit it yet.
In other movie theater subscription service news, Cinemark, the nation’s third-largest theater chain, is also enjoying the success of its own program. Cinemark Movie Club, which costs $8.99 a month for 1 ticket, plus other benefits like snack bar discounts, has grown 26% in three months to 560,000 members. According to Cinemark’s CEO, Movie Club is driving attendance and members are buying more concessions than regular patrons.
It has long been postulated that while MoviePass’s future remains murky and it is still fighting and trying to fix its mistakes, even if it disappears, the disruption it caused in the industry will remain. The continued growth of these theater-specific services is testament to the interest of the moviegoing public in this kind of model and shows that people still like seeing movies in the theater when the value is right.
For all the movies you can see in the theater this year, check out our 2019 release schedule.
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Nick grew up in Maryland has degrees in Film Studies and Communications. His life goal is to walk the earth, meet people and get into adventures. He’s also still looking for The Adventures of Pete and Pete season 3 on DVD if anyone has a lead.