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MoviePass told its members who prepaid for a year’s worth of movie tickets at the rate of one per day — the service that made it famous, while costing it millions of dollars in losses — that their terms are changing.
The move is unusual in that, typically, a subscription service will woo long-term commitments by promising better, locked-in terms for those who buy 12 or more months in advance.
The company is trying mightily to stay in business, so it chopped its offering of a movie ticket per day for $9.95 monthly to just three per month. Previously, the stricter rules applied only to those who were paying monthly. Now, however, they also apply to those who prepaid for an entire year.
The company told those who paid for an annual membership that they can request a pro-rated refund if they object to the new rules that they must now adhere to.
The new rules, also applying to all members, restrict the titles they may see. On Friday, for example, there were eight available titles listed, and missing were the films that are expected to rule the box office this weekend, including Mission: Impossible — Fallout, Crazy Rich Asians and The Meg.
MoviePass is owned by Helios and Matheson Analytics, a publicly traded company that has lost more than 99 percent of its value this year as its subsidiary has struggled to stay afloat. On Friday, the stock fell to less than two pennies a share.
MoviePass said, several weeks ago, that it has three million subscribers, will hit five million by year’s end and should turn a profit next year. The company did not respond to emails asking for updated numbers and projections.
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the hollywood reporter