Why MoviePass Is Bringing Subscription Moviegoing To Theaters

MoviePass hopes to do for the theatergoers what Netflix did for DVD renters and streaming movies, which is to let them pay one monthly fee and enjoy as many movies as they want during that time. Moviegoers can watch up to a movie a day, or 30 movies a month — that’s not bad for a membership fee that costs on average about $30 a month. In an interview with TechCrunch TV, Moviepass CEO Stacy Spikes said the inspiration to do so came about after seeing how subscriptions worked in other segments of the video entertainment market.

“We’ve been looking at the theatrical industry for a while and had noticed that home video window is subscriptionized, the cable window is subscriptionized, and we believe that given the slight decline in going to the movies, that it’s a great opportunity to help drive traffic back to theaters, by introducing a subscription service to it,” Spikes said.

But wouldn’t users just watch way too many movies as a result? How does the company plan to make money in the face of potential overuse?

“We ran our beta trials, and you have people who definitely overuse, and those who underuse, and then you have seasonality built into it,” Spikes said. “What we’ve found was our business model actually worked, that there’s slight overall underusage, but there’s seasonality built in as well.”

And the service is not just good for consumers, it’s also good for movie theaters, Spikes believes. That’s because users go to the theaters more and end up spending more on concessions — where the real money is made by exhibitors. “What we saw was a 64 percent increase in going to the movies, and they increased their concessions by 123 percent,” Spikes said. Check out the entire video above.