DIY Movie Screen for an Outdoor Movie Night

Recreate the drive-in movie theatre experience with a DIY movie screen

While movie theatres have gotten slicker over the years with 3D, IMAX, and stadium seating, there’s still something quintessentially summer about the drive-in movie theatre experience. With a bucket of popcorn and the warm July air all around you, there are few things better. Unfortunately, drive-in movies have gone the way of the dinosaur cassette tape. They’re increasingly rare these days, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t recreate the drive-in movie theatre experience in your own backyard with a projector and DIY movie screen.

For a totally no-frills method, movies can be projected onto a white garage door or side of the house. However, the picture is crisper and clearer with an actual screen. And yes, there are out-of-the-box ready screen set-ups, but those come at a price.

You can make a set-up yourself at a fraction of the cost in just 5 steps!

1.  Order projector screen material. Remember, one side is reflective and one side is not. Be cognizant of that as you begin the rest of the project.

2.  Sew a 2-inch hem along the top of the screen for added strength since that’s the side of the screen that will get the most weight put on it from hanging.

Embed a grommet into the screen

Embed a grommet into the screen

3.  Using a punch, embed a grommet into the hem area evenly spaced across the top and sides, along with one on each corner of the screen.

Now you’re ready to hang it!

DIY movie screen

4.  On a flat area on the exterior of your house, garage, or shed, place nails in accordance with the grommet holes. On the bottom corners of the screen, instead of using nails, use small bungee cords and attach to two eye hooks far enough away from the bottom outside grommets to keep the screen taut.

5.  Wait for the sun to go down, pop some popcorn, and let the movie begin!

Written by Cadry Nelson

Hello!  I’m Cadry Nelson, a vegan food & lifestyle writer.  My aim is to help others live their most compassionate lives and dispel misconceptions about what it means to be vegan.  When I’m not in the kitchen, you’ll find me in the pottery studio making hand-built ceramics or out on the hiking trail.  Visit me at, on Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube, and find me at .

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