Original Reporting by Melissa Miller
MoviePass, the once-popular movie subscription service, is officially back in beta. If you signed up in the summer, you should be ready for action with an all-new kind of MoviePass. While things are still in flux, a new basic system of credits has been introduced. And with any luck, it will be available to all by summer. Here’s what we know about MoviePass Beta.
Per a report in Variety, Stacy Spikes will return to run the service. One of the co-founders, Spikes was fired when the service was acquired by Helios and Matheson Analytics. The company then filed for bankruptcy in 2020. In its last few years, subscribers were frustrated by changes to plan options and blacked out showings. There were also service disruptions and lawsuits claiming bait-and-switch practices.
But chronic moviegoers and those ready to return to the theater will likely flock back to the service. According to the MoviePass website, the service will work at all theaters that accept credit cards. MoviePass Beta seems to indicate four different plans: Basic, Standard, Premium, and Pro. And these will let you watch anywhere from one to 30 movies per month. According to MoviePass’ website, the price for these plans ranges from $20-60 per month. Of course, this is an average price noted for Southern California & NY Metro area only. MoviePass notes, “Since we’re still BETA testing, our waitlist users are testing different pricing plans in various cities. Plans and pricing will normalize when we open to the general public.”
The plans each feature a certain amount of credits that can be used to watch a movie. How many credits a movie costs will depend on factors such as time, day, and, eventually, screen-type. Right now, MoviePass Beta only includes 2D screens, but “access to large format & premium screens is coming soon.”
Per Business Insider, Moviepass will leave Beta and be available to all by summer 2023. In addition, the return of an unlimited Moviepass subscription is being tested.
MoviePass’s popularity prompted big theater chains like AMC to create their own subscription services. AMC’s Stubs A-List club is still running. It offers up to three movies per week, including IMAX releases. It also allows for seeing the same movie multiple times and more than one movie per day, both features that the previous version of MoviePass didn’t include. AMC’s price point is $19.95 per month but again varies based on zip code. The priority line for popcorn may be the best perk, though. We’ll see if MoviePass can compete.
Originally published in