DRIVE-INS like this one at la Pointe, in Cannes, France, will open in South Africa again. REUTERS
DRIVE-INS like this one at la Pointe, in Cannes, France, will open in South Africa again. REUTERS

Drive-in's set for a comeback in Cape Town

By Sam Spiller Time of article published May 30, 2020

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CAPE TOWN - Pulling into a space, breaking out the popcorn and watching a flick from the comfort of a car’s passenger seat - that was an experience of the drive-in cinema of yesteryear.

Drive-in’s are set to make a comeback in Cape Town.

The Mother City Drive-In promises a safe venue for movie-goers to enjoy the latest flicks and golden classics while sitting in the comfort of their car. 

Audio is traditionally heard via a small speaker located just outside the car’s window.

“We have received a huge response from the public,” said founder, Sean Binder.

DRIVE-INS like this one at la Pointe, in Cannes, France, will open in South Africa again. REUTERS

Announced on Facebook last week, the drive-in is a project that aims to bring the experience back while allowing moviegoers social distance and to abide by health measures.

“We will implement strict social distancing practices: you can only leave your vehicle to use the toilet, in which case patrons will put their hazard lights on and one of our ushers will escort the person one at a time,” Binder said.

“All our staff will wear PPE for their safety as well as patrons.”

In addition to films, both new releases and all-time classics, the drive-in will also feature live performances from comedians and music groups.

A date and location for the first event has not yet been announced.

DRIVE-INS like this one at la Pointe, in Cannes, France, will open in South Africa again. REUTERS

“We do still need to adhere to certain restrictions laid out by government but as we move down levels we will be able to confirm more info,” he said.

Drive-in venues have seen a global surge in popularity due to restrictions placed in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, with venues such as airports, car parks and convention arenas being converted for movie nights.

South Africa had about 50 drive-in venues across the country dating back to the 1950s.

The two largest drive-ins in Cape Town, the Funlands and Goodwood, the latter located where GrandWest Hotel and Casino now stands, were large enough to accommodate more than a thousand cars each.

The Menlyn Park Drive-in, located on the roof of the Menlyn Park shopping centre in Pretoria, was the last drive-in operating in South Africa. It closed in 2014.

DRIVE-INS like this one at la Pointe, in Cannes, France, will open in South Africa again. REUTERS

The announcement of the Mother City Drive-In comes just as South Africa is set to enter level 3 lockdown restrictions.

Weekend Argus

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