What if there was a Netflix, but for movies that were STILL IN THEATERS?!? Or “theatres” for the fancy crowd. Well, MoviePass is a subscription-based service that launched in February of 2011 by technology and entertainment entrepreneurs Stacy Spikes and Hamet Watt, and is for going to movie theaters available in the United States. The service allows members across the country to view up to one movie (just 2D; no 3D yet) every 24 hours for a fixed monthly fee — typically starting at $29.99/month by vary based on local market– plus members can select which theaters they wish to attend. As an added bonus, there are zero “blackout dates.” MoviePass works in nearly all movie theaters that accept the Discover Card credit card (should you be a member of that exclusive club called anybody), making it one of the largest subscription-based theater networks in America.
Before founding MoviePass, Stacy Spikes was a long-time marketing executive who recently delved into the tech world and also founding the Urbanworld Film Festival — which premiered more #1 films than any other North American Film Festival, including Sundance and Tribeca and is now the largest of its kind in the world — and Hamet Watt was a former entrepreneur in residence at True Ventures who also founded full-service media buying platform NextMedium, and health app bLife. MoviePass launched in beta in June 2011 in San Francisco, but endured early trials of resistance from movie theater chains and paused both the service and the introduction of new members until later in the year. Now, the program is in full operation and uses a proprietary location-based payment technology, and also provides MoviePass members to securely and independently purchase tickets. The investors backing MoviePass include True Ventures, AOL Ventures, WME, NaLa Pictures, Lambert Media, Brian Lee, Diego Berdakin, MJ Eng, Ryan Steelberg, and Adam Lilling.