January 29, 2023 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

We-Drive Ins Opening New Location In Santa Monica

WE Drive-Ins has announced the opening of an exclusive premiere drive-in experience featuring all new release films, with their newest location at The Mark 302 outdoor parking lot, a historic landmark in Santa Monica on Thursday February 11.

WE Drive-Ins will be playing first run new Hollywood movies daily starting with Oscar buzz indie film, “Minari” written and directed by Lee Isaac Chung starring Steven Yuen (The Walking Dead).  In mid-March WE Drive-Ins anticipate playing new blockbuster action films such as “Godzilla vs. Kong.”

Since the closure of movie theaters due to COVID-19, drive-in theaters are making a comeback. A safe and socially distanced way to enjoy a night out with your friends and family. 

Easily accessible and right off of the 10 Freeway, WE Drive-Ins will be the only drive-in theater on the west side showing new movies for miles. 

Photo: Ming Lo

Founder and CEO of WE Drive-Ins Ben Chou stated, “Our mission is to restore the arts, re-employ the displaced and give back to the community. We-Drive Ins has partnered with several charities and organizations which will receive a portion of all proceeds.”

Boasting a 40’ screen and using state of the art technology including high lumen brightness DCI-compliant 2k and 4k studio approved projectors — the same projectors used in traditional indoor theaters — they held nothing back in making sure their guests receive the best drive-in experience. Sound is transmitted via Dolby FM transmitters to guests vehicles FM radio providing a completely immersive experience without leaving their car. With a 50 car capacity and reserved parking, WE Drive-Ins allows its guests to save time finding a premium spot. 

Chou hopes WE Drive-Ins will introduce the drive-in movie theatre experience to younger generations and to fuel the nostalgia older generations had for that same experience.

The first patented drive-in opened on June 6, 1933 by Richard Hollingshead in New Jersey. The decline of the drive-in was directly related to the movement away from Main Street America and towards the mall society, where convenience, times, weather and the idea of ‘all-inclusive’ became the popular way to enjoy a night out, pushing away the classic night out at the drive-in

Chou is overcoming that mentality by making WE Drive-Ins all inclusive. Each vehicle will receive one “WE Experience Pack” full of curated items including premium popcorn, beverage,  reserved VIP parking and vouchers from local and national partners. 

Photo: Ming Lo

They have partnered with Mendocino Farms allowing guests to pre-order boxed dinners of organic sandwiches and salads and with Tocaya Organica offering salads and burritos along with traditional movie theater concession stand treats such as popcorn, candies and soft drinks. 

Tiato Kitchen + Market, an eco-friendly Santa Monica restaurant serving casual Californian Asian cuisine has also collaborated with WE Drive-Ins screening of “Minari” debuting their Asian fusion Lunar New Year and Valentine’s Day menu from Feb. 11th to Feb. 25th. Highlights of this specially curated menu include: Chef Helene An’s Famous Garlic Noodles, a “Prosperity Tasting Box” featuring a Korean inspired Kimbap Roll, and for your sweet tooth, a delicious sweetheart dessert for Valentine’s Day week. The exclusive full course dinner will be served to your car for $75.00 (plus tax).

Guests are allowed to bring their own food and beverage however alcohol is prohibited. 

Due to current COVID-19 regulations WE Drive-Ins will have one showtime a night starting at 7pm and once COVID-19 restrictions are lifted will have two showtimes nightly.

Guests can purchase tickets, meals and car spots by visiting https://www.wedriveins.com/

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