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Miss the movies? Film center to host 'pop-up' drive-in screenings

Moviegoers are parked with two spaces between each vehicle as Redwood Drive-In Theatre opens for business in West Valley City on Friday, May 1, 2020. The drive-in was closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

(Steve Griffin, KSL, File)

Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

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SALT LAKE CITY — Many movie theaters have reopened across the state of Utah; but despite precautions, not everyone is yet comfortable with the idea of sitting in a room with strangers for more than an hour — or with wearing a mask for that long.

The coronavirus pandemic is reinvigorating drive-in movie theaters across America, and the Utah Film Center will try to capture some of that magic in the coming months will a series of "pop-up" drive-in movie screenings in northern Utah. The organization announced the first slate of films on Tuesday, covering dates through the end of August.

Utah Film Center executive director Patrick Hubley said the movie lineup is designed for "a wide variety of audiences so people from all walks of life can feel the warmth of connection again." The selections include classics, comedies, documentaries and collections of short films.

"There will never be a substitute for the feeling you get when you gather, in-person, with other people, to watch a movie," Hubley said in a news release. "Now more than ever, Utah Film Center believes that the communal film experience can provide much needed human connection and provide a delightful escape."

Gates will open at 7:30 p.m. for all screenings, with films starting "at dusk or just after 8:30 p.m.," according to the news release. The center asks that patrons stay in or near their own vehicles and wear a mask if they need to leave their space.

The screenings will occur in downtown Salt Lake City, at the Alta ski resort and in the Midvale Fort Union area. Here is a full lineup of the pop-up drive-in films through the month of August:

The drive-in program is scheduled to run Thursday through Sunday through mid-October and additional titles will be announced periodically at the Utah Film Center website. Tickets are $25 per vehicle, or $20 for Utah Film Center members, and must be purchased in advance.

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Graham Dudley reports on politics, breaking news and more for A native Texan, Graham's work has previously appeared in the Brownwood (Texas) Bulletin and The Oklahoma Daily.


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