San Pedro Drive-In

1941 N. Gaffey Street,
San Pedro, CA 90731

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Mann Theatres, Pacific Theatres

Architects: William Glenn Balch, Louis L. Bryan

Firms: Balch & Bryan

Nearby Theaters

San Pedro Drive In, Courtesy of San Pedro Bay Historical Society

The San Pedro Drive-In opened on June 6th, 1949 with John Payne in “El Paso” & Doris Day in “My Dream is Yours”. The San Pedro Drive-In had a distinctive trademark in a colorful mural emblazoned on the highway side of the steel and plaster screen tower building.

At the top of the graphic illustration of a caballero on horseback waving to approaching ships, the theatre name was blocked out in neon-lighted letters. The architect of the San Pedro Drive-In was William Glenn Balch & Louis L. Bryan. It had a car capacity for 900, and was operated by the Pacific Theatres chain. From June 11, 1972 it went over to screening Spanish language movies. The San Pedro Drive-In was closed November 22, 1982. The site was used for storage and it was demolished in 1987.

Contributed by William Gabel

Recent comments (view all 18 comments)

William on February 12, 2010 at 6:44 am

The cost of the San Pedro Drive-In was $300,000.00.

TLSLOEWS on April 27, 2010 at 2:55 pm

Too bad there are no photos.

tnavel on March 17, 2012 at 3:47 pm

on the way to the san pedro drive in usually in oct. the refinery that you would pass had a round tank that they would paint orange to look like a giant pumpkin. we knew we were close to the drive in

sarahfava on August 15, 2012 at 1:57 pm

Does anyone now what became of the ticket booths from the san pedro drive in? I seem to remember them being chrome and modern/ deco in design. A shame if they were destroyed.

davidcoppock on October 21, 2016 at 12:43 pm

Is there any drive-in screens remaining that still have the artwork on the back of the screen, or are they all gone?

movieman6262 on November 14, 2016 at 5:57 pm

I have a lot of memories of this theater When I was a kid. My mom and dad would take me here to see a movie and I played on the playground then when the movie started we would go to our cars and watch the movie. we would pretty much always have dinner somewhere close to the movie theater then we would go and enjoy the movie as well as have a lot of fun. One movie I remember seeing here at San Pedro was and it was my moms favorite was “The Birds” By Alfred Hitchcock. I have plenty great memories of this wonderful movie theater.

rivest266 on February 4, 2018 at 11:50 am

This opened on May 27th, 1949. Grand opening ad in the photo section.

rivest266 on March 13, 2021 at 1:10 pm

Started to show movies in Spanish on June 11th, 1972. Another grand opening ad posted.

dallasmovietheaters on June 19, 2021 at 5:02 am

Edwards experimented with the property as a self-storage facility in 1986 leaving the tower in place. However, in January of 1987, the land was sold, the drive-in demolished as it would become part of a business park incubator

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