Motor-In Theatre

4125 S. Golden State Frontage Road,
Fresno, CA 93725

918 cars

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Harvey Entertainment, Redwood Theatres Inc., Robert L. Lippert Theatres Inc.

Nearby Theaters

Motor-In Theatre

Located in the Malaga district to the south of Fresno. The Motor-In Theatre was opened on June 5, 1946 with Cornel Wilde in “The Bandit of Sherwood Forest” & Gerald Mohr in “The Notorious Lone Wolf”. Capacity in the 1940’s was about 916 cars. In 1955, the Motor-In Theatre was operated by Redwood-Lippert Theatres. By June 1975 it was screening X-Rated adult movies. It was closed in 1979.

Contributed by Ken McIntyre

Recent comments (view all 13 comments)

dansdriveintheater on November 4, 2018 at 1:15 pm

the screen still exists in 2018!

dansdriveintheater on November 11, 2018 at 1:40 am

i believe it was closed in 1966.

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on November 11, 2018 at 5:03 am

YouTube video..Here

Motor-In Theater is spelled wrong…It should be “Motor-In Theatre"

dansdriveintheater on November 21, 2018 at 1:36 pm

never mind- it closed in the early 1980’s

dansdriveintheater on November 22, 2018 at 11:20 am

1962 aerial uploaded here. notice the weird placement of the concession stand.

50sSNIPES on October 4, 2019 at 11:24 am

Opened In The Mid-1940’s Earliest I Believe Is 1946.

MichaelKilgore on October 28, 2019 at 1:39 pm

A 1972 aerial photo showed the Motor-In still intact and in good shape. It stayed on topo maps through at least 1981. The Motion Picture Almanac included it on its drive-in lists through the 1976 edition, but the MPA rarely noticed changes during 1967-76. The Motor-In fell off the list for good when the list rebooted in 1977.

Then again, that might have been because of the Motor-In’s content. I found a June 25, 1975 ad in the Fresno Bee for an X-rated triple feature there.

BTW, Google Maps prefers 3115 E Cartwright Ave for the current address. And the screen was still up as of a July 2015 Google Street View.

MichaelKilgore on January 11, 2020 at 10:05 am

Same Motor-In? Boxoffice, Oct. 8, 1955: “TULARE, CALIF. – The Harvey Amusement Co., San Francisco, has bought the 576-car Tulare Motor-In from the Robert L. Lippert theatre chain, also of San Francisco.”

rivest266 on January 30, 2021 at 9:46 am

This opened on June 5th, 1946. Grand opening ad posted.

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