AMC Theatres launches subscription movie service to rival MoviePass

AMC Theater

Theaters' war on MoviePass seemed to have reached a tenuous truce.

AMC will soon be offering its vast clientele a premium subscription service called "AMC Stubs A-List", which will give theatre-goers the chance to watch three movies a week for $19.95 per month.

Although there is no carryover from week to week, AMC notes that all three movies can be seen on the same day (with a two-hour buffer between each show time) and that members can see individual movies they have previous seen.

Theatres chief executive Adam Aron pointedly said in a statement that AMC's program is at a "sustainable price". As it turns out, the theater chain was simply biding its time before launching a new AMC Stubs A-List program to compete directly with the movie subscription service. The "week" in which customers can see their three movies will reset every Friday, lining up with the day typical for movie openings. That represents a major inconvenience for many and that could make AMC's service worth the extra money for many moviegoers.

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AMC's Stubs A-List launches June 26, and it should be interesting to see how it does in comparison to Moviepass.

While MoviePass is a cheaper option, Variety said AMC will also offer their subscribers screenings in IMAX, Dolby Cinema and RealD. The offer includes other incentives, such as free upgrades on popcorn and soda, no online ticket fees and other loyalty bonuses.

MoviePass has caught wind of AMC's A-List program, which they caustically tweeted about earlier Wednesday morning. MoviePass works at most theaters in the USA, not just AMC, because the company pays full price for each and every ticket. Shares of Helios and Matheson Analytics, the parent company of MoviePass, plunged more than 29%. Plus, at least for the time being, that $9.95 a month price point is still more attractive. On its official Twitter page, MoviePass accuses AMC Theatres of "repeatedly" attempting to sabotage them while looking to turn a profit of its own.

We'll have to see if this move from AMC cuts into the growth projected by MoviePass or not.

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