Astro Drive-In

3141 S. Walton Walker Boulevard,
Dallas, TX 75211

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Astro Drive-In

When it opened in 1968, the Astro Drive-In was the world’s first fully automated drive-in, but it became known for having the largest screen in the Western Hemisphere. The screen measured nine stories tall and was 140 feet wide.

Because of its size and unique character, the Astro Drive-In was often used as background for print ads, TV commercials, TV shows, and motion pictures filmed in Dallas/Fort Worth.

Since the Astro Drive-In was located about 7 miles directly south of Texas Stadium, the home stadium of the Dallas Cowboys, the theater regularly hosted Cowboy players and their friends, as well as notable television and feature talent who were working on location in the Dallas area. They all seemed to enjoy the old time feel of the Astro Drive-In.

When “Grease” was re-released several years ago, the Astro Drive-In had the fifth-highest gross in the south, an impressive feat considering the grossing potential of modern multiplex theaters.

The Astro Drive-In was not far from other area theaters, two General Cinema theaters and a United Artists theater. Many of the Astro’s patrons absolutely loved the idea that GCC and UA went out of business, but the Astro Drive-In continued to thrive.

Until it was destroyed by fire on the night before Thanksgiving in 1998, the Astro Drive-In was the last operating drive-in theater in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.

Contributed by Richard Peterson

Recent comments (view all 18 comments)

thebrimmmuseum on April 17, 2005 at 2:15 am

new cars have headlights that stay on all the time (or ast least mine does. anyone know how this will work at the drive in today? i’d love to go to the galaxy but would this be a problem?

texas25th on February 4, 2007 at 9:27 pm

This drive in is now gone it was decimated by fire In November of 1998 and later torn down .Randy took these On 2/2/1999 and 2/7/1999 It was located at Kiest, Ledbetter and Duncanville roads

Some fantasic photos of this great drive-in during its final days!

View link

jamestx234 on July 18, 2007 at 9:03 am

Here are some photos taken during the filming of Norman Rockwell’s “Breaking Home Ties” at The Astro in October 1987. The TV movie stars Jason Robards,Doug McKeon and Local actor Jerry Haynes(Mr Peppermint).Filming took place in and around Dallas and Waxahachie Texas.

Christinada5 on April 9, 2008 at 8:08 pm

I remember the Astro as kid growing up in the mid to late 80’s. Actually saw Batman there. A few years ago, after the fire happened, I drove by there only to see 3 huge screens in a deserted field. It looked like something out of a old western movie. I even remember the talk, back at the time about rebuilding. Since I’ve been doing a little research, it also seems to me that the number one reason drive-ins don’t rebuild or reopen is due to the property being too valuable. One would think that with all the state of the art movie theaters that are being built today, creating a drive-in would be no problem. But I guess it’s a matter of economics.

matt54 on November 22, 2010 at 8:08 pm

Address either is wrong, or perhaps google maps has a glitch; at any rate, map link takes you to Walton Walker and Illinois; the Astro was not at this location, it was at Loop 12 (Walton Walker) and Kiest Blvd. (see link to opening night ad, below).

View link

In google maps aerial view, the remains of a three-screen drive-in are clearly visible in the triangle of land formed by Walton Walker on the east, Duncanville Rd. on the west, and Kiest on the south.

Driveintheatre2001 on January 18, 2012 at 12:16 am

Here’s a few of my photos of the ASTRO Drive In Theatre, right before & after it was demolished. Seen Here: RAC Photography ASTRO DRIVE IN .. ENJOY!

Randy A Carlisle

jwmovies on September 4, 2012 at 8:30 am

It is not South Walton Walker, just Walton Walker.

Pawnshop on June 27, 2013 at 5:10 pm

I went there to see Terminator 2 just for the experience. The sound was broadcast with a weak FM signal that we could just pick up in the car, and I remember it was so cold out that we had to run the engine for heat a couple of times. I went to the concession stand for a dog and Coke and was a bit disappointed when the girl nuked it for me, but it was still cool. A couple pulled up a few slots over in an early 50’s shoebox Ford and when they got out to smoke a cigarette I noticed he was dressed like James Dean, ducktail and all and she was wearing a poodle skirt. I assumed they were an older couple reliving their youth, but when a car pulled in and swept them with their head lights I noticed the couple could not have been more than 25 years old! They looked like they stepped right out of Rebel Without a Cause. I am sure they were real but that is the sort of thing that might make a guy think he was seeing ghosts. A memorable night and the last Drive-In I attended

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