SAN FRANCISCO—Along with others throughout the country, San Francisco’s Lark Theater is hosting a drive-in movie theater

The Lark Theater’s Drive-In Movies Under The Stars has showings every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night, located at The Village at Corte Madera. At a rate of $30 per car, drivers can watch classics such as “Dirty Dancing” and “Grease” and modern films like “Wonder Woman” and “The Rolling Stones: Havana Moon.” The theater utilizes both a radio station and a mobile app to broadcast movie audio into attending vehicles. 

Drive-in theaters have made a resurgence as social distancing health orders continue to limit entertainment options and the closure of movie theaters throughout the country. In Pasadena, California, the Tribeca Drive-In took over Lot 9 at the Rose Bowl. In Woodbridge, Virginia, Movies At The Pfitz placed their screen in the Potomac Nationals Stadium. Walmart announced in early July plans to transform 160 of its store parking lots into contact-free drive-in movie theaters by August. 

Movie theater chains such as Regal Cinemas and AMC Theatres, the world’s largest movie chain have not transitioned to drive-in theaters. They announced and delayed reopening dates. As of July 28, Regal plans to open on August 21, and AMC is planning to reopen theaters in mid-to-late August. The re-opening of theaters would require patrons to wear a mask everywhere outside of seating, theater capacities will be reduced to 50 percent, and a minimum of two seats open between groups.  

On July 28, AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. signed a multi-year agreement with Universal Pictures to shorten the theatrical window before movies go online. The period during which films appear in theaters before being released for home viewing would change from a minimum of 70 days to 17 days, allowing streaming services a more current presence in the film industry.