MoviePass adds two premium subscription plans

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Cash-strapped MoviePass has added two new premium subscription plans as it scrambles to shore up losses that have soared into the hundreds of millions of dollars this year.

The cinema subscription service’s new offers will still limit subscribers to three films per month — a far cry from MoviePass’ original movie-a-day promise — but will offer options for users to pay more to access premium-format films like IMAX and 3D.

The current plan of $9.95, which limits customers to three movies per month from a smaller, rotating selection of films, will remain. But MoviePass is also introducing plans priced at $14.95 and $19.95.

The $14.95 plan will allow subscribers to go to any three films of their choosing per month, while the $19.95 plan will grant the same access, but will allow users to upgrade one of their movies to either an IMAX or 3D film.

The new rates will roll out at the beginning of 2019, but MoviePass is offering discounted annual passes in an advanced sale.

Still, it’s far from clear how any of these tweaks will save the company.

Last month, MoviePass reported an operating loss of nearly $130 million, with only $6.2 million cash on hand. It also backed off from plans to undergo a massive 500-to-1 reverse stock split, admitting that it couldn’t get enough stockholder support for the bizarre move.

CEO Mitch Lowe said in an interview with the New York Times, which first reported the news on Thursday, that MoviePass’s recent upheaval — during which its service crashed, it restricted film access, and it experimented with new pricing plans seemingly every day — was bad for business.

“The way we have been going about this is not the right way,” Lowe said. “We listened. We reassessed.”

Shares of MoviePass parent company Helios & Matheson climbed 5.5 percent Thursday morning, to 1.7 cents.

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