The COVID-19 pandemic has caused movie theaters across California and here in the Coachella Valley to be temporarily closed in an effort to help slow the spread of the coronavirus. The Mary Pickford Theatre in the Downtown Arts & Entertainment District has been affected as well with the mandatory shutdowns. Even with theaters opening in other states with fewer number of cases, Hollywood has been apprehensive on releasing blockbuster movies when many theaters remain closed and a percentage of an audience not quite ready to venture into an indoor space for an hour and half movie. Releasing a blockbuster movie with potentially less than a normal number of paying moviegoers is financially risky to the movie industry as most movies have only a few weeks to generate the majority of their total revenue.
To overcome the coronavirus obstacles, the Mary Pickford Theatre applied for a special use permit and the city council unanimously approved having a Pop-Up Drive-In to be located just south of Highway 111 and east of West Buddy Rogers Avenue. The drive-in plans to be operational prior to the Labor Day weekend and offer movies from dusk to no later than 10:30 pm through the end of February. It will be able to accommodate up to 51 cars per showing and guests will enjoy a large outdoor screen while sitting in the comfort of the own automobiles, snacking on Mary Pickford Theatre popcorn and refreshments, and having a great destination for date or family night.
Tickets for the drive-in will go on sale soon through the Mary Pickford Theatre online box office at https://dplaceentertainment.com/location/mary-pickford