Reopening Events: Drive In Cinemas

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Exploring how the film industry has adapted to the pandemic.

In recent months the events industry has been forced to adapt and rethink its approach across all sectors. Some have chosen to take what were supposed to be physically attended experiences and create virtual events. Others have looked for loopholes and begun to explore safer ways in which to repurpose their planned events. In turn offering valued customers and attendees a re-imagined experience.

It's been remarkable to observe the changing face of an industry amidst what has been a collection of unprecedented, unpredictable array of circumstances, the likes of which we have never seen before.

Now as the world prepares to reopen, albeit under restriction, we're taking a look at the diverse array of approaches and initiatives being taken by business owners, events producers and promoters worldwide as they prepare to bring their events back online.


Just one of a handful of entertainment operators who've been hit hard as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Whilst some major chains may look to explore reopening in the coming months there has been a surge in popularity towards drive in cinemas across the UK. Many operators have spotted a gap in the market. Drive in cinemas allow for guests to maintain social distancing from the comfort of their own cars whilst viewing the latest blockbusters and films via giant 60ft projected screens. Ticketing providers have begun to adapt their systems, including the integration of number plate provision during the booking flow as well as the physical allocation and on site positioning of customer vehicles. It has required the ticketing industry to think differently in respect of the detail and granularity for a cinema of this styling's needs.

Phil Clapp of the UK Cinema Association offered the following advice in respect of drive in cinemas.

"It۪'s fair I think to say that we've been on a steep learning curve around the operation of drive-in cinemas given their relative scarcity until now. I'm particularly grateful therefore for the support of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the British Film Institute and the Independent Cinema Office in producing these new guidelines.

While we will be delighted to see drive-ins flourish in the coming weeks, months and years, our key focus remains on ensuring that the hundreds of cinema venues across the UK that have now been closed for almost three months are able to open as soon as possible. Our work on guidelines for those sites continues, and we hope to make an announcement soon."

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