Some have called me a sore loser, or just bitter that AMC has navigated the movie subscription space better than Moviepass. Those things may actually be true. But man oh man do I despise AMC and their stodgy dishonest curmudgeon CEO Adam Aron.
What a jerk that guy is! Aron panned Moviepass and did everything in his power to punish HMNY stock. We all get that AMC doesn’t want a middle man in between them and their consumers, but there is a good chance that AMC has bitten off their cheek to spite their face.
If – and it is a BIG if, MP survives, AMC will surely have a big target on its back. In the short term, I fully expect to see AMC see maximum peak pricing, and we will see more blocked films at AMC than any other theater. When I talk to employees at AMC, (which is rare as I hate the local AMC) they have consistently told me that MP was near half of all tickets sold. Now that is likely an exaggeration from teenage kids, but let’s face it, the number of tickets MP paid for at AMC has been massive, and that number is about to drop big time!
AMC will also now inherent the heaviest users of Moviepass- according to AMC’s press release they have quickly ramped up 175,000 blood sucking leaches to their new service. Almost all of these early adopting deal seeking movie buffs will be more than motivated to catch 3 movies a week- and they will certainly enjoy the IMAX and 3D films as part of the deal. If you don’t think this little deal is going to put a dent in AMC’s profits- think again. At a likely average of above $13 a showing with 12 movies a month, that is $156 of tickets a month for the $20 price tag. I am 100% confident that AMC just tanked profits with their most loyal and lucrative customers. And I am equally confident that $20 a month is just enough to scare away the casual moviegoers. It was maybe more idiotic than MP that way- but we shall see. I expect AMC stock to get hammered when the combination of low MP tickets and high usage of A-list hits both top and bottom lines. I personally hope they get crushed!
There are already rumors that there was a management meeting at AMC where it was said that if Moviepass dies AMC is going to kill A-List or massively jack the price up. Yep- competition forces a lot of positive moves for consumers- and it works the other way when competition dies. So think about that when you switch over to the devil.
Moviepass is likely going to drop a lot of subscribers and see them move to AMC with all of its changes and jerking people around, but if it recovers, and manages to somehow grow to 5 Million subscribers, Moviepass will have some significant clout to work with. This is now all about independents. Independent small theater groups and independent films. MP has to really zero in on that group to get back to building a loyal base. I think they can do it if they focus on this objective. They can still offer the benefit of seeing some of the big films- At partner theaters, or with partnered films, but the focus should be on indies, and really breaking through with the “cool” films, that appeal to the “cool” crowd. If they can do this and rebuild their brand with a focus on helping out the cool artistry of independent film they can own that niche and build from there.
IF- Moviepass can achieve that difficult task, they could then slowly wedge their way into a more powerful position over time. This was why Moviepass desperately wanted to get to 5M subscribers, that number would have given them more leverage much faster. Unfortunately the cheating lying stealing shit heads of Wall Street were not patient enough to make that happen. Plus Farnsworth was too stupid to articulate the plan in a way that grubby little Wall Street turds could comprehend it.
So now plan B starts – will it work, or will they money run out? Who knows – but it continues to be a fascinating story!