Discounts on movie tickets make theaters uneasy

Fearing that moviegoers will get used to low prices, some theater chains frown on promotions offered through Groupon and balk at a proposed all-you-can-watch pass.
Discounts on movie tickets make theaters uneasy

At a cinema in San Francisco, about 100 people recently showed up for a free screening of “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” and a presentation of a kind of Netflix for movie theaters.

The service, called MoviePass, would allow consumers to watch all the movies they want for a $50 monthly fee, using their smartphones to download codes that could be redeemed for tickets at theaters. With the backing of AOL Ventures, the New York start-up had planned a national rollout of the service this fall with online ticket firm MovieTickets.com.

But before a single pass was sold, AMC and other theater chains blasted MoviePass, saying they were blindsided and would not honor the pass.

“Plans for the program were developed without AMC’s knowledge or input,” Stephen Colanero, AMC’s chief marketing officer, said in a statement.

At a cinema in San Francisco, about 100 people recently showed up for a free screening of “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” and a presentation of a kind of Netflix for movie theaters.

The service, called MoviePass, would allow consumers to watch all the movies they want for a $50 monthly fee, using their smartphones to download codes that could be redeemed for tickets at theaters. With the backing of AOL Ventures, the New York start-up had planned a national rollout of the service this fall with online ticket firm MovieTickets.com.

But before a single pass was sold, AMC and other theater chains blasted MoviePass, saying they were blindsided and would not honor the pass.

“Plans for the program were developed without AMC’s knowledge or input,” Stephen Colanero, AMC’s chief marketing officer, said in a statement.

At a cinema in San Francisco, about 100 people recently showed up for a free screening of “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” and a presentation of a kind of Netflix for movie theaters.

The service, called MoviePass, would allow consumers to watch all the movies they want for a $50 monthly fee, using their smartphones to download codes that could be redeemed for tickets at theaters. With the backing of AOL Ventures, the New York start-up had planned a national rollout of the service this fall with online ticket firm MovieTickets.com.

But before a single pass was sold, AMC and other theater chains blasted MoviePass, saying they were blindsided and would not honor the pass.

“Plans for the program were developed without AMC’s knowledge or input,” Stephen Colanero, AMC’s chief marketing officer, said in a statement.