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 Here's a cool hobby 
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Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2007 9:21 am
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 Here's a cool hobby
http://backyardtheater.com/

If my dogs hadn't totally trashed my back yard I would seriously consider building one of these.

I'm still really tempted to try and spruce up the yard and make the attempt.

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Tue Jul 08, 2008 12:14 am
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Location: Brookline, MA
 
Oh my god, that's such a cool idea! Thanks Skorch. One of my ultimate fantasies is to be able to build a really cool home theater where I can watch my movies and have people over to watch movies and sporting events. Considering that at the moment I don't even have cable, and our only TV is an ancient model that was probably around during the days of CDF, that fantasy is a long way off. But something like this could be really cool. You could keep it simple like they say on the site, and just set up a sheet for a screen. Then you could add improvements as time and money allow. A great way to get a little feeling of the drive-in experience--especially now that drive-ins are such an endangered species :( .

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Last edited by Col. Manning on Wed Aug 20, 2008 11:37 am, edited 1 time in total.



Tue Jul 08, 2008 2:15 pm
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Location: Pawtucket, RI
 
Funny, this is the first time I've seen anything like this, but it seems like such an obvious way to have a fun movie party.

...unless people have been doing this all along and I've just never been invited to any :P ... :cry:


Tue Jul 08, 2008 6:48 pm
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[quote="Beastball"]Funny, this is the first time I've seen anything like this, but it seems like such an obvious way to have a fun movie party.[quote]

You know, I was thinking the same thing Beastball. It seems like it should be so obvious that I was sort of afraid to admit that it had never occurred to me. The only problem I could see for myself (besides having to acquire some sort of projection equipment) is that I live in a residential neighborhood, so I would worry about the neighbors thinking I was blasting my movies too loudly :roll: .

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Wed Jul 09, 2008 10:45 am
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Hey, it looks like this idea is going more mainstream. Last weekend's "USA Weekend" Sunday newspaper insert magazine had an article on back yard drive-ins. The first part of the article actually focuses on how mobile (and covert) these things can be. They sort of liken it to the whole "flash mob" fad of a couple of years ago (wasn't what they were called?). And there's also mention of a guy who outfitted his car to be a mobile drive-in (including the ability to broadcast movie soundtracks to other cars over the radio!). Check it out.

The Do-It-Yourself Drive-In:
http://www.usaweekend.com/08_issues/080 ... e-ins.html

I'm seriously starting to think about doing some version of one of these things next year. We have a garage in the backyard, the side of which would make a perfect spot for a screen (possibly a white sheet to start, or maybe a sheet of plywood painted white?). All I'd need to do is figure out an easy and cheap way to project the DVDs onto the screen. Could be very cool indeed!

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Last edited by Col. Manning on Wed Jan 14, 2009 11:43 am, edited 1 time in total.



Wed Aug 20, 2008 11:46 am
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
we have had backyard drive ins at various peoples houses over the years. all you need is a decent pa, video projector and something to project onto. it's a gas.

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Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:54 pm
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
Yeah, I really need to seriously look into this. We have a small (but big enough for this) backyard, and I can easily see putting up a screen on the side of our garage. Something to think about during the long winter while waiting for spring!

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Fri Dec 05, 2008 3:04 pm
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
Thinking about this great idea again. astroal, could you share any details about the various backyard drive-in experiences you've had? It sounds like such a great idea!

In reviewing the thread I noticed that the link I posted above from USA Weekend isn't working. Here's another one that (as of this moment) is working.

USA Weekend August 17, 2008 "The do-it-yourself drive-in":
http://www.usaweekend.com/08_issues/080817/080817drive-ins.html



Here's a news story on a backyard drive-in on Long Island:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y2oqlIUKD5Y

Check it out! This guy even made custom openings for his drive-in!

Universal opening:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rUPyvcui-AU&feature=related

20th Century Fox custom opening:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5KGDytbc9yk&NR=1

Is that cool or what? He's got others too (Disney, Touchstone)--check them out!

Finally, while thinking about this whole idea, it occurred to me that if I was ever able to pull this off I'd want to have something special for my first-ever backyard drive-in movie. I really can't see anything other than the original "Star Wars" as the choice for the first movie (and it helps that my daughter has just gotten into Star Wars of course). If money was no object (which of course it IS), how awesome would it be to get one of these toys?

R2-D2 DVD Projector:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fpVQ_BXZOHw

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Wed Jan 14, 2009 11:48 am
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
it is great fun!
a few tips.
do it once with just your family for practice. you'll want a dry run to see how long it takes to set up and so on.

we use a tripod screen. got one for about $100. if you use one of those remember to place heavy stuff around the feet so the screen doesn't blow over if there's a strong wind (yes it happened to us!). you can also try using a sheet to project onto but i don't recommend that.

you'll want some intermission trailers to show and there's no better place to get them than here:
http://www.somethingweird.com/cart.php? ... ory_id=255

also i strongly recommend you pick the movie in advance and tell your guests what your showing. a couple of times we put it up for debate and it always turned into some political round table debate. :lol:

star wars sounds like a good choice!

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Wed Jan 14, 2009 6:55 pm
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
Thanks for the tips astroal. There's a lot of good information at the backrardtheater.com site skorch started this thread with as well. I think what I like about this whole thing (in addition to being able to watch something on a screen much bigger than any TV I'd ever be able to afford, and my general love of real drive-ins) is the fact that it's such a flexible hobby. I mean, as long as you have the space to do it and a little drive it can happen. It can start off small and simple (a really cheap projection unit and a white sheet), and if it works out and you want to pursue it firther you can. Money is obviously a problem (and the projector end of it is what will give me the most trouble if I try to do it), but other than that it's not really all that complicated. I mean it can be complicated if you want it to, but it doesn't have to be. Know what I mean? It would probably take a quite while for me to work up to the point where I need custom openings like the guy above made for his "Islip Backyard Drive-In"!

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Thu Jan 15, 2009 12:18 pm
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
you're most welcome!

custom graphics are easy if you have power point or open office. when you get a projector make sure it is comptabile with whatever computer you have and you're all set.

you can probably find a decent projector on ebay.

best buy has some good ones for around 1000.

i really don't recommend a sheet because of the wind but it could work ok.

my projector is pretty old. i got it for free many moons ago. too long of a story to go into here.

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Thu Jan 15, 2009 4:59 pm
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
This has been put on the back burner for the moment, but I still am thinking about it. I do have a DVD (about four hours long) of drive-in intermission stuff that I got a couple of years ago from eBay. If my backayard drive-in ever gets off the ground I should be able to pull plenty of fun stuff off of that! It even has the classic Pic ad (remember that one?). That would be perfect for a buggy summer night in the back yard.

Here's the Pic ad:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AKCBzS2AL9k

Somehow I inherited my wife's family's home movies (8mm film) when her grandmother moved into an assisted living facility a while back. The good part about this is that the lot came with a film projector and A SCREEN. If nothing else works at least I know I have a real (if small) movie screen at my disposal. While I understand the problems associated with using a sheet, I would be putting it on the side of my garage--which, properly attached, should give it plenty of support to prevent it from blowing around too much. The side of my garage is actually the main thing that keeps this idea going around in my head. It's the cornerstone of my plans. If I could use that to project a movie onto I'd pretty much be all set. Yes I still need a projector (a major consideration), but at least I have a convenient place to project the movies onto. I just need to make that space suitable. It has wooden siding that wouldn't work well even though it is white. If I can simply install a removable flat surface over that wall it should work out fine. The sheet solution would be easiest, least complicated and cheapest. If this project ever gets off the ground I'll probably start with that to see how it works and then gradually upgrade as time and money allow.

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Thu Feb 19, 2009 2:26 pm
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
i have the pic ad too! it cracks me up! pic! :lol:

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Thu Feb 19, 2009 3:41 pm
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
I'd consider renting or borrowing (if possible) a projector for your first movie-party. Might be the most cost efficient way to find out if the outdoor movie-party is something that works for your back yard.


Thu Feb 19, 2009 5:19 pm
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 Re: Here's a cool hobby
Very good suggestion Beastball. I'd hate to invest a lot of money and get all excited, only to discover that it doesn't work out as well as I'd hoped.

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Sat Feb 21, 2009 8:10 am
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