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Walmart Will Turn Parking Lots Into Drive-in Movie Theaters This Summer

Emily Schafer

July. 07, 2020

Walmart is teaming up to turn 160 store parking lots into drive-in movie theaters . With the Fourth of July on the horizon, the American retail giant announced there will be extra incentive to visit its properties this summer and beyond.
Makeshift drive-in movie theaters have been sprouting up all over the United States in the last few months. Owners of businesses large and small have faced significant income loss as COVID-19 ravaged the country. With many traditional cinema venues shut down due to state closures and phased re-openings, some entrepreneurs have sought to revive old drive-in spots or create temporary theaters in parking lots.
That’s where Walmart comes in. According to TechCrunch , Walmart will be partnering with Tribeca Enterprises, the media company backed by Robert De Niro that is best known for its film festival by the same name. Starting in August of 2020, Walmart will open 160 of its U.S. parking lots as drive-in movie theaters.
The locations of stores that will be converted have not been announced to date. Nor have the movie titles to be shown been revealed. However, Walmart has disclosed that the cinema showings will run through October of 2020; they plan to facilitate over 300 showings, and the movies available on site will be announced through a designated website .
In a press release, Walmart highlighted its emphasis on family-friendly showings . Their drive-in locations will feature “hit movies, special appearances from filmmakers and celebrities, and concessions delivered right to customer vehicles." This setup is a boon for Walmart; the proximity to their stores will allow patrons to access snacks and drinks – among countless other items - for movie concessions.
Tribeca’s Drive-In program has also announced events in cities across the country, including New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Seattle, and Arlington, TX. Those drive-ins will materialize as a result of partnerships with IMAX as well as AT&T. The surge of drive-in interest is largely due to restrictions on social interaction, but the bread and butter of drive-ins, older films , have seen a comeback all on their own in recent years. In fact, almost 30 years after it debuted in cinemas, Jurassic Park hit number one at the box office when it was re-released just a few years ago.
No announcements have been made about which films will be included at Walmart Drive-In. However, according to TechCrunch , the list of films Tribeca planned to release elsewhere has included: Selena, The Bodyguard, Straight Outta Compton, Creed, Jerry Maguire, Space Jam, Love & Basketball, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Back to the Future, Mean Girls, Superbad, Girls Trip, Bridesmaids, Talladega Nights, The Fast and The Furious, Goldfinger, Casino Royale, Inside Out, The Lego Movie and Spy Kids.
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