The Untold Story of MoviePass Founders: From Startup to Success

MoviePass was a revolutionary subscription-based service that allowed moviegoers to see unlimited movies in theaters for a flat monthly fee. Founded by entrepreneurs Stacy Spikes and Hamet Watt in 2011, the service quickly gained popularity and became a household name in the entertainment industry. However, the journey from startup to success was not without its challenges, and the untold story of the MoviePass founders reveals the ups and downs of building a disruptive business in the competitive world of Hollywood.

**I. The Birth of MoviePass**

Stacy Spikes and Hamet Watt first met in the early 2000s when Spikes was working as a film executive and Watt was a tech entrepreneur. The two bonded over their shared love of movies and their desire to make the film-going experience more accessible and affordable for everyone. In 2011, they launched MoviePass with the goal of revolutionizing the way people watch movies in theaters.

**II. The Rise of MoviePass**

MoviePass quickly gained traction among movie enthusiasts who were eager to see as many movies as they wanted for a fraction of the cost of a regular ticket. The service offered a flat monthly fee for unlimited movies, making it an attractive option for cinephiles on a budget. Soon, MoviePass had thousands of subscribers and was poised to disrupt the traditional movie theater industry.

**III. The Challenges of Scaling Up**

As MoviePass continued to grow in popularity, Spikes and Watt faced a new set of challenges in scaling up their business. The company had to negotiate deals with major theater chains, navigate complex licensing agreements, and manage a rapidly expanding subscriber base. Despite these obstacles, Spikes and Watt were determined to make MoviePass a success.

**IV. The Critics and the Doubters**

Despite its rapid growth, MoviePass faced skepticism from industry insiders who doubted the sustainability of its business model. Critics questioned whether MoviePass could generate enough revenue to cover the costs of its subscribers’ movie tickets, and some speculated that the service was too good to be true. However, Spikes and Watt remained confident in their vision and continued to push forward.

**V. The Golden Age of MoviePass**

At its peak, MoviePass had over 3 million subscribers and was processing millions of ticket transactions each month. The service was hailed as a game-changer in the entertainment industry, with many predicting that it would revolutionize the way people watch movies. Spikes and Watt were lauded for their entrepreneurial spirit and innovative approach to disrupting the traditional movie theater model.

**VI. The Downfall of MoviePass**

However, MoviePass’s success was short-lived. The company faced mounting financial losses due to its unsustainable business model, and in 2019, MoviePass filed for bankruptcy. Spikes and Watt were forced to step down as co-founders, and the service was eventually shut down. Despite its downfall, MoviePass had a lasting impact on the entertainment industry and paved the way for other subscription-based services to thrive.

**VII. The Legacy of MoviePass**

Although MoviePass may no longer be in operation, its legacy lives on in the form of other subscription services that have adopted a similar model. Companies like AMC Stubs A-List and Cineworld’s Unlimited have taken inspiration from MoviePass’s pioneering approach to movie ticketing and have built successful businesses around the concept of unlimited movie-going. Spikes and Watt may no longer be at the helm of MoviePass, but their vision continues to shape the way people experience movies in theaters.

**VIII. Conclusion**

The untold story of MoviePass founders Stacy Spikes and Hamet Watt is a testament to the power of innovation and entrepreneurship in the entertainment industry. Despite the challenges they faced along the way, Spikes and Watt were able to build a groundbreaking business that changed the way people watch movies. The rise and fall of MoviePass serves as a cautionary tale for aspiring entrepreneurs, but also as a reminder of the potential for disruption and innovation in an ever-changing industry. As the entertainment landscape continues to evolve, the legacy of MoviePass and its founders will endure as a symbol of perseverance and vision in the face of adversity.


1. The Hollywood Reporter (2018). “The Rise and Fall of MoviePass: How the Company Can’t Manage to Make Money.” Available at: [](

2. Variety (2019). “MoviePass Shuts Down Service.” Available at: [](

3. CNBC (2019). “The Rise and Fall of MoviePass.” Available at: […](

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