When MoviePass launched in August 2017, it seemed a movie lover's dream come true. For $10 a month, subscribers could see one movie a day–essentially up to 31 theater trips every month. But if that sounded too good to be true, it's because it was. Over the next year the company was hit by a series of financial crises, and the constantly changing terms of its membership did little to stem its problems. A new report has now revealed some of the controversial methods that MoviePass bosses allegedly tried in order to to stay afloat.
A report in Business Insider reveals that there was a crisis point in July 2018, when the company temporarily ran out of funds. MoviePass's business model centered upon the company paying for the tickets used by its customers, reportedly leading to a decision to change the passwords of some of its heaviest users to stop them using the service. The site's sources at MoviePass also stated that CEO Mitch Lowe ordered that the hugely popular Mission Impossible: Fallout should be removed from the service that month. MoviePass has not commented on Business Insider's story.
As 2018 continued, it was hard to keep tracking of the changes to the service. In August it reduced the number of movies that could be seen from one a day to three a month, and then caused controversy by renewing the subscriptions of many members who had chosen to let them elapse. A few weeks later this changed yet again, when the company then announced that while members could now watch a film daily, the choice of films would be severely limited. In addition, it introduced a bizarre scheme that involved uploading a picture of your ticket stub to stop repeat viewings.
MoviePass still technically exists as a company. The app stopped working last month but is currently active; however, MoviePass is no longer accepting new subscribers. The company's website currently states that it has been "working hard to improve our groundbreaking subscription service to ensure it meets the vision that we have for it." MoviePass has also moved into movie production, signing a three-movie deal with Bruce Willis at the end of 2018.
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