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AMC Entertainment Jumps Into the Streaming Wars

AMC Entertainment Holdings (NYSE:AMC), the largest movie theater chain in both the U.S. and the world, announced today that it would become the first U.S. theatrical exhibitor to launch a digital movie service — AMC Theatres on Demand. The company said in a press release that starting this week, members of its Stubs loyalty program in the U.S. would be able to rent or buy more than 2,000 of the most popular digital movies from a variety of top studios, via, the AMC mobile app, or Roku-enabled smart TVs. Movie purchases and rentals will allow members to accumulate Stubs points that can be used toward in-theater rewards.

The company said it had reached agreements with “every major Hollywood studio” to make a selection of their movies available to rent or buy. This deal includes both new releases and popular catalog movies.

Image source: AMC Theatres.

More to come

Both Lionsgate Entertainment and Paramount Pictures, a division of Viacom, will provide customers with an added incentive to use them first, awarding three additional movies to viewers who choose the studio for their first purchase or rental. 

AMC has plans to expand its collaborations, developing “a first-ever cross-platform marketing partnership” with AMC Networks. It’s important to note that while the names of the companies are similar, they’re unrelated.

Later this year, Stubs members will have access to movies from AMC Networks properties IFC Films and RLJE Films. As part of the venture, AMC Theatres will promote AMC Networks’ four subscription streaming services — which include Acorn TV, Shudder, Sundance Now, and Urban Movie Channel — to moviegoers, both in its theaters and directly to Stubs members.

Groundbreaker or also-ran?

This marks the first foray by a major theater chain into the living room, placing AMC on a collision course with a host of other digital movie sellers. While this might

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