During the era of social distancing, drive-in movies have made an unexpected comeback in the Southland. Movie theaters have been allowed to re-open in most counties beginning early June but many large theaters have issued confusing policies on masks. Instead of sitting in half-full theaters, drive-in movie theaters are offering cinephiles another option.
Drive-in movies have been around for more than 100 years, the earliest patented drive-in theater opened in 1933 in New Jersey. While technology has advanced from film rolls to high definition projectors, the concept of the drive-in movie theater remains that same. Fans drive up to a large outdoor screen, tune in their car radios or use a sound transmitter to listen, and enjoy a big-screen movie from the comfort of their own cars. Some include outdoor concession stands, lawnchair seating, or VIP parking options.
In addition to dedicated drive-in movie theaters, savvy cities are opening limited-run screening series. Pack some snacks and visit a few of these local drive-ins:
- Paramount Twin Drive-In in Paramount
- Vineland Drive-In in La Puente
- Mission Tiki Drive-In in Montclair
- Van Buren Drive-In in Riverside
- Rubidoux Drive-In in Riverside
- Ontario Airport Drive-In Movie Series in Ontario
- Movies Under the Moon in Anaheim
- Summer Drive-In Series in Irvine
- Rose Bowl in Pasadena, presented by the Tribeca Film Festival
Spaces are limited and reservations are required. Check individual venues for additional safety protocols and concession options. Enjoy drive-in options now through August!