Pico Drive-In

10850 W. Pico Boulevard,
Los Angeles, CA 90064

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Pico Drive-In exterior

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Drive-In Theatre was the first of its type to be opened in California, and it opened on September 9, 1934.

Later known as the Pacific Drive-In, as it was operated by Pacific Theatres. By 1943, it was known as the Pico Drive-In, and was closed and demolished in 1947. The Picwood Theatre was built on part of the site.

Movies have always held a place at this intersection of West Los Angeles—from the 1948 built Picwood Theatre (which was demolished in 1990) to the 4-screen Landmark Theatre inside the Westside Pavillion, which opened in the 1980’s.

Contributed by William Gabel

Recent comments (view all 14 comments)

dhill01 on April 1, 2008 at 6:25 pm

I assume this drive in was on the south west corner, same the the Picwood Theatre? Or was it on the South East corner? …former location of the Westland Shopping Center and current location of the Westside Pavillion.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 18, 2008 at 4:37 pm

It was Clifford Balch who designed this theatre, according to Southwest Builder & Contractor of July 27, 1934.

kencmcintyre on October 25, 2008 at 4:25 pm

From the LA Times, July 29, 1934:

The Auto Drive-In Theater, which Rian James, producer, and Karl Freund, director, are to sponsor, will probably be located in Santa Monica. The theater which they plan is patterned after the one in Camden, NJ, and is graded in such a way that persons parked in everycar in the parking space may see the show.

kencmcintyre on November 27, 2008 at 12:26 pm

Here is a 1938 photo from Life Magazine:

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on April 7, 2009 at 1:22 pm

This site claims that the Drive-In Theatre was later known as the Pico Drive-In. There is a 1935 flyer on that site explaining the new sound system. The sound will be distributed directly thru your radiator. I’d like to know how they accomplished that.

kencmcintyre on July 17, 2009 at 7:32 pm

Here is an LA Times ad from January 1938:

meheuck on July 18, 2009 at 2:54 am

The Westside Pavillion theatre was operated by Landmark, not by Laemmle.

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