MoviePass to Shutdown Indefinitely on Sept. 14

Parent company Helios and Matheson is exploring a sale of MoviePass and other assets

MoviePass Gotti
MoviePass's Rod Vanderbilt (left), CEO Mitch Lowe and parent company Helios & Matheson CEO Ted Farnsworth, at the premiere of Gotti, starring John Travolta/Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images

The curtain has finally closed on MoviePass.

The subscription movie-going service’s parent company Helios and Matheson announced on Friday that the service will shut down on Sept. 14, with no plans to relaunch.

“MoviePass notified its subscribers that it would be interrupting the MoviePass service for all its subscribers effective September 14, 2019, because its efforts to recapitalize MoviePass have not been successful to date,” Helios and Matheson said in a statement. “The company is unable to predict if or when the MoviePass service will continue. The company is continuing its efforts to seek financing to fund its operations. There can be no assurance that any such financing will be obtained or available on terms acceptable to the Committee”

In addition to shutting down MoviePass, Helios and Matheson said that its board of directors has formed a strategic review committee in order to identify, review and explore all strategic and financial alternatives for the company, “Including a sale of the company in its entirety, a sale of substantially all of the company’s assets including MoviePass, Moviefone and MoviePass Films, a business reorganization or one or more other extraordinary corporate transactions, together with the assumption or settlement of the Company’s liabilities in connection with any of these alternatives.”

It’s been a slow death for MoviePass, which struggled to raise money and right the ship after a tumultuous year and change.

After slashing the price of a subscription to $10 a month from as much as $50 in August 2017, MoviePass enjoyed a period of rapid subscriber growth — more than expected — and newfound popularity. But the expansion proved economically unsustainable.

The company burned through millions of dollars, suffered from what it said was a significant fraud problem, continually frustrated customers and struggled to keep its head above water.

In July 2019, MoviePass shutdown services for what it called at the time a “temporary hold” to deal with unspecified “maintenance related issues.” MoviePass also said it would use that time to recapitalize, to no avail.