MoviePass cuts price again, bundles subscription with Fandor

Cinemas News

MoviePass, already criticized by some theatre owners for cheapening the moviegoing experience, is taking it to the next level: It is further lowering its price and adding streaming into the mix, making it a cut-rate competitor to Netflix and the others.

The service that offers a movie ticket each day to subscribers who pay just $9.95 per month said late Friday that it will lower its price to $7.95, and that the new price includes free access to Fandor, a streaming service that boasts the biggest collection of independent films.

The partners said Friday it was a "limited offer" and the Fandor subscription would run out after a year. Plus, there's a $19.95 "processing fee" that brings the one-year total to $115.35, which customers must pay for up-front.

MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe told The Hollywood Reporter he hasn't yet decided how long the limited offer would last. "We're having fun. We're energizing the movie industry; constantly experimenting."

“MoviePass is not only a phenomenon in the entertainment industry, but it has sparked a movement, now two million people strong,” said Ted Farnsworth, CEO of Helios and Matheson Analytics, the service's parent company.

MoviePass says it is responsible for five percent of the nation's total box office nowadays, as it mostly pays full price for the tickets that its two million subscribers use.

“With this new offer, we can make the movement even more accessible to moviegoers," said Farnsworth. "I believe our annual subscribers will become influential movie consumers and an amazing asset and bellwether for the film industry as a whole.”

The news announced Friday came as several MoviePass users took to the Internet to complain that their subscriptions were canceled after being accused of abusing the service. Some complainers, though, accused the company of canceling them because they simply were seeing too many movies.

Lowe told THR that the cancellations were for subscribers who were using MoviePass to pay down the cost of seeing Fathom Events or IMAX content, which is not allowed. Some, he said, were also using their MoviePass cards for a free ticket, then cashing them in for gift cards minutes later.

The emails received by some users Friday reads: "Your account has been canceled effective immediately for violating the terms of service by using your MoviePass card to purchase part of a premium ticket. You cannot sign back up for MoviePass."—The Hollywood Reporter