Alamo Drafthouse is planning a nationwide launch of their own ticket subscription service, dubbed Season Pass, by the end of the year. Back in 2017, MoviePass looked to shake things up in the industry by slashing their monthly price to $9.95, encouraging millions of people to sign up. The appeal of their model was apparent from the start; for a low flat rate, viewers could purchase tickets to see whatever they wanted in theaters, saving lots of money in the process. Of course, MoviePass' strategy never was sustainable for the longterm and the company faced turbulent times (to say the least) last year.
Though MoviePass was always destined to fail, they seem to have made a lasting impact on the business. Around the time MoviePass imploded, AMC introduced the Stubs A-List, which offers users a variety of perks and has exceeded expectations so far. Curiously, none of the other major American chains started up a wide subscription service in the months since, but now another one is about to enter the fray.
Related: A Timeline of the MoviePass Meltdown
According to Business Insider, the Alamo Drafthouse is preparing to expand their Season Pass service (which is currently available in beta form in Yonkers, New York and Raleigh, North Carolina) to all of their locations by the end of 2019. Season Pass is an unlimited plan and will cost $20 a month in most places. Alamo founder and CEO Tim League noted the price varies based on market size.
Alamo was encouraged by the success of the initial launch, which saw 40,000 people in Yonkers register for a waitlist. The beta version of Season Pass places no restrictions on the number of times subscribers can see an individual movie and allows people to choose from 2D and 3D screenings. There's also the option to pre-order tickets in advance to guarantee a seat. Full details about Season Pass aren't available at this time, but it'd be reasonable to assume those features will carry over. It'll be interesting to see if there's any kind of cap implemented. For instance, MoviePass limits users to one film per day, while the A-List is good for three movies per week. The A-List also offers discounts on concessions, so perhaps there will be some additional perks for Season Pass to make it stand out.
To date, there are 35 Alamo locations across the country and several others will be built (including theaters in Los Angeles and Manhattan). Obviously, they're not as big as AMC, but Season Pass should prove to be a hit when it's available later this year, particularly in areas where there is not a local AMC. And in all likelihood, this development will force the other chains to keep a close eye on Season Pass' progress as they perhaps plot their own subscription services. There's clearly a demand for them, and they appear to be the way of the future for moviegoing. Fingers crossed Alamo experiences the kind of prosperity AMC did last year.
Source: Business Insider