MoviePass shutting down service Saturday, parent company announces

MoviePass is no more, unless its owner can find a buyer to revive the movie ticket subscription service.

Parent company Helios and Matheson Analytics Inc., which owns a majority stake in MoviePass, said Friday that it was officially “interrupting” service for subscribers as of Sept. 14, though the company had already halted service in July as it claimed to be working on improvements to its app.

For consumers, the service had seemed almost too good to be true. For $9.95 per month, members could see a movie in a theater daily, even getting tickets for new releases. But even as new members flocked to the company, it struggled to make money. Customers began complaining about the MoviePass app not working.

Interrupting MoviePass service in July, during the busy summer blockbuster season, was probably a bad sign for the business’ future. Then, a cybersecurity firm discovered in August that MoviePass had accidentally exposed customers’ credit card data.

Helios and Matheson said its board had formed a “strategic review committee” that would explore the company’s options, including a possible sale of the company or its assets like MoviePass and Moviefone.

“The company is continuing its efforts to seek financing to fund its operations,” it said in the announcement. “There can be no assurance that any such financing will be obtained or available on terms acceptable to the committee.”

MoviePass isn’t the only ticket subscription service to fall. Its former rival Sinemia said in April that it was discontinuing its U.S. operations.

Similar services offered by theater owners seem to be more successful. AMC Theatres announced last month that its Stubs A-List program had more than 900,000 subscribers. The service allows members to see three movies per week, but only at AMC locations.