Pickwick Drive-In

1100 W. Alameda Avenue,
Burbank, CA 91506

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Logan5
Logan5 on February 17, 2012 at 7:11 am

Info I’ve found says the Pickwick was open May 12, 1949 to September 15, 1989. It was operated by: Cal-Pac Drive-In Theatres, Inc., and then by Pacific Theatres. Vehicle capacity was around 750. Unfortunately I never saw a movie here but I remember driving by there just before it was closed in 1989. It was demolished around late-1989 and replaced by the “Rancho Marketplace” shopping center (Vons Pavillion, Denny’s). The Pickwick Gardens entertainment complex (banquet rooms, bowling, ice skating, etc.) is still in operation just to the south (behind the shopping center) on Riverside Drive.

MagicLantern
MagicLantern on June 18, 2010 at 12:27 am

Now a large development with a Pavilions and a Staples. You can see on Google Maps where the screen was – at the bottom right corner of the lot.

Harvey
Harvey on April 6, 2009 at 10:41 am

The Pickwick plays in role in 1976’s ST IVES starring Charles Bronson.

Tillmany
Tillmany on September 22, 2008 at 6:14 am

Pickwick Drive-In Theatre is featured in Columbia’s 1950 film “He’s a Cockeyed Wonder” with Mickey Rooney. On the marquee is the Columbia feature “Fuller Brush Girl” with Lucille Ball and Eddie Albert, and “A Girl’s Best Friend,” a non-existent film, which is apparently the second feature, and the one in progress. A uniformed female usher greets the driver, takes his money, and gets his ticket from the nearby cashier, in a glass-enclosed booth; then a uniformed male usher, with flashlight, directs the car to an available parking spot, and places the speaker on the car window. We get to see a bit of “A Girl’s Best Friend” with Richard Quine and Lola Albright as the uncredited couple, in the usual situation, in the front seat of a convertible, before trouble in the theatre breaks out.

shoeshoe14
shoeshoe14 on September 6, 2008 at 8:49 pm

Was mentioned in the documentary “Drive-In Movie Memories” in 2001.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on September 24, 2007 at 5:31 am

Here is a February 1980 ad from the LA Times:
http://tinyurl.com/28ndwg

mrae
mrae on September 8, 2006 at 5:14 pm

I went on horseback to see Blazing Saddles at the Pickwick Drive-In! I remember lining up to enter the theater on my pony, along with 30 other riders, behind a stream of cars. I was in elemenatary school at the time. A friend of mine, used to live in the apartments next door on Shelton St. We would sneak out and climb into the trees that lined the theater to watch rated R films, like Saturday Night Fever. Good memories = ]

klebrun
klebrun on June 15, 2006 at 12:20 am

I believe this theater was also used in a car chase scene from the second season Rockford Files episode “The No-Cut Contract”. A little over 9 minutes into the episode, Rockford’s Firebird turns into the entrance to the theater and you can see the marquee advertising “The Gambler” with James Caan and “Once Is Not Enough” with Kirk Douglas. Since James Garner did most of his own stunt driving, you could see a smile on his face while he was “hill jumping” between the speaker poles in the drive in parking lot.

Knatcal
Knatcal on January 1, 2006 at 10:35 pm

In the early 1980’s my aunt worked at this drive-in and I remember going here many nights because she would get us in for free. A large retail complex with a Pavilions Market is now located on the site.

echosyst
echosyst on December 3, 2005 at 4:47 pm

Actually this drive-in is best known for being the filming location for the drive-in scene in the movie “Grease.” The great “Dancing Hot Dog” intermission trailer from Filmack plays on the screen as John Travolta sings the song “Sandy” from the playground area in front of the screen.

bill1321
bill1321 on March 28, 2005 at 5:09 am

I remember sneaking in a friends trunk to see “The Godfather.” Lived around the corner in 1958-60 and pulled out of our driveway to immediately join the line for “The Absent-Minded Professor.”

jackhicko
jackhicko on February 18, 2005 at 11:52 am

In 1985, it was only a dollar on Thursday nights. I went to see anything I could! I can only remember “Runaway” with Tom Selleck.

Meredith Rhule
Meredith Rhule on October 28, 2004 at 5:00 pm

I had to run a small clip for Micheal Landon there while he was shooting a scene from Highway To Heaven. He was a great guy. He autographed his glossy and gave it to my mother. She had it framed and displayed in her living room. :)

Daria
Daria on May 5, 2004 at 9:29 am

Hey—-I LIKED “Straight To Hell!” The Clash, The Pogues and a really bad script—-you couldn’t beat it…though we probably should have tried to…!

Dejael
Dejael on November 22, 2002 at 4:44 am

One of the last places you could see the Pickwick Drive-In is in the terrific action thriller “BLUE THUNDER” (1983) starring Roy Scheider and Candy Clark. There is an exciting chase sequence in the movie filmed partly on the ground and partly from a helicopter, and it works well in the film. The Pickwick played small roles in films before, due to its location in Burbank, but this was its last hurrah.

ChrisWillman
ChrisWillman on April 18, 2002 at 7:49 am

One of the last major events here, and no doubt one of its last full houses, was the world premiere of Alex Cox’s “Straight to Hell,” which brought out quite an interesting crowd of Hollywood hepcats, none of them paying the slightest attention to the awful film.