Turn those digital movie codes into additional free movies

If you’ve been collecting physical media and redeeming the included digital copy codes, then you are likely aware of the movie rewards programs offered by three of the studios – Disney (which now includes Fox), Sony, and Universal. How do they compare to one another?

 

Disney Movie Insiders

Formerly Disney Movie Rewards, the program was revamped and relaunched on September 26, 2019 as Disney Movie Insiders. As before, Disney (and newer Fox) DVD, Blu-ray, and UHD Blu-ray releases will have a code inside that you can redeem for points in the rewards program. Back in the DMR days, you could redeem your points for physical rewards such as other Disney DVDs, Blu-rays, and UHD Blu-ray, but also collectible merchandise like pins, soundtrack CDs, posters, etc. After the transition to DMI, physical rewards were for the most part discontinued, at least temporarily (so we were told), and that they would return in the near future. Most of the redeemable rewards were of the virtual variety, such as downloadable artwork such as wallpaper, e-gift cards for the Disney Store, premium D23 memberships, and exclusive private studio tours. The current pandemic caused Disney to discontinue their private studio tours and delay the relaunching of physical reward items. If you connect your Movie Rewards account with DMI, any movies purchased or redeemed through the service will now automatically be applied as points on DMI. You can also upload your ticket stubs during the first two weeks of a movies release to earn additional points (or connect your Fandango and/or Atom tickets account).

 

Sony Rewards

Sony’s rewards program has been around for several years, allowing you to earn points not just on Sony movie purchases and theater tickets, but on Sony products as well. Membership can be tricky if you do not have a “standard” e-mail address (such as Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc.), as many users with private or commercial email domain addresses have been deemed ineligible for membership in the program. Points earned can then be redeemed for gift cards at various retailers or for Sony merchandise. Physical media purchases can also be redeemed not only for points, but also towards a free Sony movie (or 4k upgrade) on Movies Anywhere when you register five movies as part of the Movie Buff Pass program using the mobile app. The Movie Buff Pass, though, is one of many problems with the rewards program, as not all movies are eligible, with many movies appearing to be eligible based on the description of the program on the reverse side of the Movies Anywhere code. For example, the recent Columbia Classics 4K Ultra HD Collection boxed set contained six Movies Anywhere codes (one for each movie in the set) and instructions for the Movie Buff Pass rewards program was printed on the reverse, however only three of the codes were eligible for redemption. This has been a sticking point since the Movie Buff Pass program was initiated several years ago, with Sony Rewards customer service simply stating “This disc is not eligible for registration. Please browse the list for eligible discs.”
Another sticking point is the slow rotation of available free titles in the program once you complete a pass, sometimes taking up to nine months for new titles to appear. Is someone giving birth to these free movies? Nearly all redemptions and registrations can only be completed on the mobile app, which is often buggy, sometimes requiring a new installation for it to work.

 

Universal All Access Rewards

Universal also just revamped and rebranded their rewards program. What was a simple and basic program where you could redeem a code (or upload a receipt) to receive a free code to a Universal movie on Movies Anywhere along with points that could be used to enter a contest for a free American Express Gift Card has now evolved to a website that has a bit more style, transitioning to a point system where you can earn points by redeeming codes from movie inserts, upload receipts from movie purchases, link your rewards account with Movies Anywhere to receive points for digital purchases, enter contests, view trailers and other videos, etc. Points can then be redeemed for downloadable activity sheets, digital coupons at GRUV and Digital Movie Deals, and free movie codes, with physical rewards like signed movie posters and scripts, DVDs, Blu-ray, and even UHD Blu-rays coming soon (the website currently has rewards like Fast & Furious 4K UHD Collection and The Big Lebowski Limited Edition Collector’s Set 4K UHD greyed out with a splashy Coming Soon imposed over them). The previous rewards program was usually very good at rotating their free movie titles every 3-4 months, but they were often limited to five or six movies, the majority consisting of direct-to-video titles with one or two classic or well-known movies. At present, the free movies include Being Flynn, Cop and a Half, Hyde Park on the Hudson, Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie, and Along Came Polly by redeeming 1,000 points for each title. The good news is that validated rewards codes from Blu-ray and UHD Blu-ray titles will currently net you 1,200 points, which works out to a free digital movie plus 200 points.
Customer Service for Universal’s rewards program is the best of the three, often responding within three business days with a solution to your issue. In fact, just recently, my rewards code for the recent The Invisible Man was not being accepted by the new program. One email and three days later, customer service sent me a new code. Now that is what I call customer service!

Conclusion

While all three rewards programs are somewhat crippled due to the current pandemic with the suspension of shipping physical rewards (in the case of Sony, delayed and extended shipping times), one can hope that as we return to some sort of normalcy that those rewards will return. Or at the very least, Disney will follow both Sony and Universal’s lead and offer free Movies Anywhere codes.

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Todd Erwin

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Yeah, I used to use the Disney program when they offered discs, but haven't bothered since they got rid of them.
I took advantage of their "clearance sale" just before the revamp. The have frozen expiration dates on points for the time being, thankfully.
 

Jake Lipson

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I still enter the Disney points when I get codes out of habit, but I agree with others here. The unnecessary revamp has made it essentially a useless program. I haven't seen anything I wanted to redeem since the changeover. This is ironic because I now have the largest amount of points I've ever had at any one time and nothing to spend them on.

Prior to the current freeze, Disney points only expired if you didn't enter any codes for a year. That has never been an issue for me because I would never go a whole year between buying Disney discs anyway.
 
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David Norman

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I still enter the Disney points when I get codes out of habit, but I agree with others here. The unnecessary revamp has made it essentially a useless program. I haven't seen anything I wanted to redeem since the changeover. This is ironic because I now have the largest amount of points I've ever had at any one time and nothing to spend them on.

Prior to the current freeze, Disney points only expired if you didn't enter any codes for a year. That has never been an issue for me because I would never go a whole year between buying Disney discs anyway.

Even if you didn't buy discs there usually are a couple sets of free points every month as well.

Usually reall and made up holidays, a couple hundred points in December, the monthly newsletter usually gives 5 points and you don't even hae to subscribe to the newsletter. So far the link has been identical for nearly a year - just click through the link and signin to your account for point.

https://www.disneymovieinsiders.com/?newsletter=mysterypoints

It's usually activated it seems randomly around the middle of the month (10-20th) and will redeem once until it resets on the 1st of each month. In May it was the 2nd though that seems to be a fluke and was a week earlier than it had ever activated, June it was the 16th which is more typical, and July hasn't gone live yet.
If you click before it's activate during a month you'll get a Newsletter Error message.
 

David Norman

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The Sony Program seems to be one of the better programs for now. At least you can accumulate movies (digital only now) with them and points which later can be used for Gift Cards or other items. If you have a Sony CoBranded CC, the purchases also give rewards points. Every year or two I've ended up with $25 or even $50 in Gift Cards.

Register 5 qualified titles in their Movie Buff App and get a code for a Digital Copy chosen from a select group of titles. Disc registration is done with the Digital Code sheets that came with the movies. This is separate from the actually digital redemptions
First disc registered get a Newbie Award which gets your first digital code and each registration is worth 45 points.

Downside -- not all Sony/Columbia codes qualify for registration and the redemptions are somewhat limited though do change every few months.
It's smartphone app only now. The PC version was canned a few months ago.
Limited to 10 disc registrations per month
Limited to 24 Movie Buff Passes per account (basically 25 free movies).

Upside -- the choices now include several UHD digital copies.
You're supposed to be limited to 1 account, but many people who have maxed out have registered a new account email and started over. So far nobody has been suspended or cancelled

Originally the allowed Bluray Rewards, then added a few Digital only, then went digital only.
Each time the program has changed it seems they reactivate many of the codes so I've registered the same code 3 or 4 times over the years.


The current list of redemptions include. Normally there have been 20-25 choices, but when they added the 4K rewards the number of rewards dropped substantially. Hopefully this is temporary b/c I'm pretty much down to a couple options again.
All the Money in the World 4K
Alpha 4K
Anger Management
Brightburn 4K
Escape Room 4K
Hotel Transylvania 3 4K
MiB International 4K
Slender Man 4K
Spider-man Far From Home 4K
Surfs Up
The 6th Day
The Angry Birds 2 4K
The Night Before 4K
The Star 4K
White Boy Rick 4K
 

David Norman

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DMI posted on their Facebook page that around 9/16 they expect to have at least some Physical Rewards back. I guess I'll believe it when I see it given their recent history of misstatements

If you sign in now --
DMI Anniversary should automatically give you 15 points
WISHGRANTED promo code for another 20

and if you have a Sept Birthday another 25 points -- learning from the other forum that a ton of us have Sept DOB -- Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and mid winter recreation at it's finest
 

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All the Money in the World 4K
Alpha 4K
Anger Management
Brightburn 4K
Escape Room 4K
Hotel Transylvania 3 4K
MiB International 4K
Slender Man 4K
Spider-man Far From Home 4K
Surfs Up
The 6th Day
The Angry Birds 2 4K
The Night Before 4K
The Star 4K
White Boy Rick 4K
That list has stagnated once again, with no new changes in months.
 

David Norman

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That list has stagnated once again, with no new changes in months.


They seem to update every 6-9 months or so, but even that is irregular. I finally ran out of old disc codes to register so I'm a lot slower now than in the past, but I think of the current selections there's only 2 I don't have already. I've exhausted Sony choices so many times I've lost count and had to wait months for something new to pickup. I even end up with stuff I really dislike -- Emoji Movie -- just to be able to use a freebie code. They've reset their redemption so many times I can't remember how many times I've redeemed the same code multiple times, but it's just weird what items qualify and which don;t -- 3 of the 4K codes out of the Columbia Box work, 3 don't

I'm really really antsy to see what Disney finally puts up. The shut down right before SW9 came out so I missed getting that Original Poster which I need to complete the Sequel Trilogy set. The new Black Widow movie hopefully will also have a real poster offered.

I tried to drag some information out of DMC customer reps the other day about new exclusive or possibly Fantasia in Nov, but either they don't know anything yet or can't say yet.
 

Jake Lipson

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I have more points with Disney than I've ever had before at any one time, because I haven't had anything worth using them on since physical rewards went away.. So I'm very curious to see what they offer, as I definitely have the points to get almost anything I would have wanted at the normal point levels before the changeover.
 

David Norman

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I'm back to 30K (again). Seems I hit 45K at one point back in 2015 then spent a bunch on Christmas gifts -- a bunch of Jim Shore items before they were stopped. Slowly built back to 30K last summer and I spent 12-15K during the clearance sale last year and got tons of items, but things (about 30 posters and a few other things) were so cheap I still only managed to get down to around 13-14K so I been sitting on those and ended up wiht a bunch of 4K upgrades so now I'm back to where I started. All but one item arrived OK -- my Maleficent 2 Teaser poster went missing, but for 150 points it just wasn;t worth worrying about.
 

Jake Lipson

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Oh, I've never had that many.

Usually, I fixate on one reward and then save up points to get it. When I have enough to redeem, I do that immediately, which takes me back down to zero-ish (or however many points are leftover from the last code I entered just before getting enough points to redeem it.). Then I pick another reward to aim for and build back up and do it over again.

This has worked pretty well for me since the program originally launched on October 3, 2016 with the release of The Little Mermaid Platinum Edition DVD, which was the first release to come with points. But I've never aimed something super-expensive like sculptures or studio experiences. I mostly aim for catalog Blu-rays that I didn't manage to get when they were new, posters, or occasionally a CD back when they offered those. These are usually overpriced, but still a smaller point value than the really expensive stuff.

The last reward I got, from the sale, was the Blu-ray of Age of Ultron. I was delighted to see that it was the original artwork from its 2015 release, not the bland re-release artwork it has been subjected to since. I'm very curious to see what they bring back. It's 12 days until the 16th, which is the date they indicated on Facebook.
 

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The Sony Program seems to be one of the better programs for now. At least you can accumulate movies (digital only now) with them and points which later can be used for Gift Cards or other items. If you have a Sony CoBranded CC, the purchases also give rewards points. Every year or two I've ended up with $25 or even $50 in Gift Cards
Universal is offering 50 free bonus points to new members of their Universal Rewards All Access. No code required.
Its sad to say that the Sony program is still one of the better ones. It used to be much better. The Movie Buff (after each 5 registered movies) use to give you a much wider selection of titles with real disc Blu-ray disc (usually with a new code towards next 5 registered titles and often digital code to use). And almost Sony discs could be registerd, e.g. in the Columbia collection only some of the tiles can be registered.
 

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The shut down right before SW9 came out so I missed getting that Original Poster which I need to complete the Sequel Trilogy set.

You got your wish. I just saw this on the Disney Movie Insiders Facebook page with some pictures of rewards that will be available on Wednesday.

Rise of Skywalker poster reward.jpg

Also listed on Facebook are Blu-rays of The Incredibles, Brave and Coco for "1,200 - 1,500 points" and a Funko pop of Mulan from the live-action remake for 750 points. Coco is the standard Blu-ray+DVD+digital copy edition; The Incredibles and Brave are the Blu-ray + digital (no DVD) reissues from a few years ago with big heads on the cover art.

An email I received sometime last week announcing the return of physical rewards pictured Blu-rays of The Little Mermaid (interestingly, the old Diamond Edition from 2013, not the current Signature Collection version); Coco; the original release of The Force Awakens; the Beauty and the Beast live-action remake; and the 4K edition of Black Panther. It also showed what look like Funko pops of Olaf from Frozen and Ian from Onward. None of these shown in the email included price points.

As usual, I think the Blu-rays are overpriced relative to their value, especially since all of those movies are older and on Disney+, but I'll probably bite if there are titles I really want.
 
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Osato

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You got your wish. I just saw this on the Disney Movie Insiders Facebook page with some pictures of rewards that will be available on Wednesday.

View attachment 78455

Also listed on Facebook are Blu-rays of The Incredibles, Brave and Coco for "1,200 - 1,500 points" and a Funko pop of Mulan from the live-action remake for 750 points. Coco is the standard Blu-ray+DVD+digital copy edition; The Incredibles and Brave are the Blu-ray + digital (no DVD) reissues from a few years ago with big heads on the cover art.

An email I received sometime last week announcing the return of physical rewards pictured Blu-rays of The Little Mermaid (interestingly, the old Diamond Edition from 2013, not the current Signature Collection version); Coco; the original release of The Force Awakens; the Beauty and the Beast live-action remake; and the 4K edition of Black Panther. It also showed what look like Funko pops of Olaf from Frozen and Ian from Onward. None of these shown in the email included price points.

As usual, I think the Blu-rays are overpriced relative to their value, especially since all of those movies are older and on Disney+, but I'll probably bite if there are titles I really want.

thanks!

what time will this go live? I have 3000 points and I’d love to get something even if it’s just a Star Wars poster.

thanks
 

Jake Lipson

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what time will this go live?

I don't have any more information than what they have announced publicly. However, It says on that image I pulled from their Facebook page that the poster will be available beginning at 9am PT, so I would guess that that is when all of the rewards will be going live. I've also heard that there will be new rewards every Wednesday, although I don't know what will be added n future weeks that won't be there this Wednesday.

I suspect that they will have a wider selection than we currently know about, because the stuff they have mentioned is pretty minimal at this point. We will probably have to wait and see what all goes up when they flip the switch on Wednesday.

All that being said,

I would be really surprised if you have any trouble getting a poster if you log in on any time on Wednesday. It's possible that they might get a rush of orders because people have been sitting on points for a long time, but still. In all my time as a member of the previous Movie Rewards iteration, I never saw anything that I want sell out within a day or two. They usually had stuff for a good while, particularly if it's a Blu-ray they're trying to clear out.
 
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Osato

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I don't have any more information than what they have announced publicly. However, It says on that image I pulled from their Facebook page that the poster will be available beginning at 9am PT, so I would guess that that is when all of the rewards will be going live. I've also heard that there will be new rewards every Wednesday, although I don't know what will be added n future weeks that won't be there this Wednesday.

I suspect that they will have a wider selection than we currently know about, because the stuff they have mentioned is pretty minimal at this point. We will probably have to wait and see what all goes up when they flip the switch on Wednesday.

until the morning then....