Showcase Cinemas, a division of National Amusements and the tenth largest exhibitor in North America, is launching a pop-up drive-in theater outside their Showcase Cinema de Lux Patriot Place location in Foxboro, Massachusetts.
The drive-in, created in partnership with the Patriot Place shopping center in which the Cinema de Lux theater is located, opens this Saturday, May 30, with an already sold-out screening of Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark. Proceeds from ticket sales to that event will benefit the Foxboro Foot Pantry.
Announced titles fall into the category, for the most part, of recent films whose theatrical runs were abbreviated by North America’s theatrical shutdown. Two of the announced titles are Pixar’s Onward and Sonic the Hedgehog; the third is Trolls World Tour.
Showcase has laid out the drive-in cinema’s safety and operational procedures on its website; among them, all tickets and concessions orders must be placed via the Showcase Cinemas app; masks are required for restroom visits or if a patron needs to open their windows; and each vehicle will be given a trash bag upon mobile ticketing check-in, which they must take with them (along with their trash) at the end of the show.
“Drive-ins are a big part of Showcase Cinemas’ 80-year history, as the company was one of the first theater chains to introduce and embrace the drive-in concept throughout the 20th century,” said Mark Malinowski, vice president of global marketing for Showcase Cinemas. “Therefore, we are excited to bring our history full circle with this new concept that sold out its first show in less than 24-hours. This will be our first step towards reopening Showcase Cinemas with new health and safety protocols in the coming weeks.”
Shortly after theaters shut down in North America, drive-in theater started popping up in areas as far away as Alaska. (The drive-in concept is also popular in Germany.) In the month since the shutdown, some regional chains—such as Showcase—have begun exploring the drive-in concept, as well. Malco Theatres, for one, opened a drive-in location in Memphis earlier this month. EVO Entertainment, which operated drive-in theaters before the COVID-19 crisis, has upped their drive-in presence, and B&B Theatres has opened a drive-in location in Independence, Missouri.