- Atom Tickets, the movie ticketing company whose owners include Disney and Lionsgate, this week released a movie ticketing app that works inside Snapchat's image-messaging platform. The Movie Tickets by Atom mini-app lets people watch movie trailers, buy tickets and share moviegoing plans with friends without leaving Snapchat, per an announcement.
- AMC Theatres, Cinemark, National Amusements’ Showcase Cinemas, CMX Cinemas and Landmark Theatres are among the theater chains that sell movie tickets through Movie Tickets by Atom. The mini-app lets moviegoers reserve seats so that they can practice social distancing while going to the movies during the coronavirus pandemic.
- The mini-app generates a QR code that theaters can scan to limit physical contact and help moviegoers avoid waiting in ticket lines. Atom also published an online safety guide to inform audiences about the safety procedures they can expect at reopened theaters.
Atom Tickets is releasing its mini-app on Snapchat as many cities and states ease the pandemic lockdowns on movie theaters that have devastated the entertainment industry. A key question is whether people are ready to return to theaters that are allowed to reopen by following rules to protect employees and customers. The percentage of people who said they're ready to return to theaters within a month grew to 74% this month from 59% in May, per tracking surveys by Atom Tickets. Those responses are considerably higher than the 17% of consumers who said they feel comfortable going to the movies in a tracking survey by researcher Morning Consult. Theaters face a key test in the next month as more of them reopen.
Atom Tickets was among the handful of companies to announce a mini app for Snapchat in June, when the image-messaging app's parent company Snap unveiled support for Snap Minis at its partner summit. The mini apps are significant for companies like Atom Tickets in integrating their services with Snapchat, which is popular with U.S. teenagers that are a key target for the movie industry. Unfortunately, the pandemic led studios to delay their summer blockbusters until the fall, when Atom Tickets has an opportunity to sell more tickets through online channels including Snapchat.
The release of Movie Tickets by Atom on Snapchat follows other integrations between its digital ticketing service and the image-messaging app. Atom in March added a feature that lets smartphone users share their moviegoing plans on Snapchat. After buying a ticket in the app, customers see a "Share to Snapchat" button to send a message other Snapchat users or post to a Story. Last year, Atom worked with movie search app Flikflix to let viewers of Apple TV find movie tickets and make a direct purchase.