MoviePass is changing up its strategy in hopes of finding a path to profitability.
The subscription-based company and its subsidiary, MoviePass Films, announced this week it’ll be refocusing its business model to “no longer depend on revenues from studios and exhibitors.”
In a statement to Observer, parent company Helios’ CEO Ted Farnsworth said the move will “enable us to demonstrate greater long-term value to our subscribers, partners and shareholders.”
Farnsworth went on to say that the plan will include MoviePass producing its own “high quality content for the big screen and streaming,” while continuing to subsidize the movie theater experience. “We believe this combination will maximize subscriber participation in our unique entertainment ecosystem.”
This isn’t the first time MoviePass has dabbled in backing its own content instead of distributing those made by traditional Hollywood studios. 2018 saw two heavily marketed, yet little-seen films backed by MoviePass Ventures: John Travolta’s Gotti and The Row starring reality star Lala Kent.
The new strategy also comes months after the company announced plans for its production and exhibition company, MoviePass Entertainment Holdings Inc., with the release of 10 Minutes Gone starring Bruce Willis. The service has had quite a tumultuous year, which included price hikes and ticket buying outages that forced the company to scale back its offerings. What started out as every film buff’s “unlimited movies” dream has turned into a dead one.
But still, MoviePass isn’t giving up on grabbing its slice out of the entertainment distribution pie. Perhaps taking a page out of Netflix’s book—and its recent Roma Oscar success—MoviePass’ foray into production is curiously timed.
Diversifying means of revenue stream is the latest iteration of MoviePass, which says it’ll “focus on technological innovation and high-quality content production” with its three major ventures. These include classic MoviePass, original content via MoviePass Films and its acquired media and ads service, Moviefone.