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Although we now have to wait an extra year for Halloween Kills and Halloween Ends, another consequence of COVID-19, fans of the franchise can at least look forward to John Carpenter’s original movie and some of its sequels coming to the drive-in. With the drive-in providing one of the rare venues for watching films while social distancing, Halloween and sequels Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers are now coming to participating outdoor theaters.
The drive-in has been providing a useful outlet for distributors this summer, with the likes of The Evil Dead and Ghostbusters recently getting picked up for outdoor screenings. Now, Trancas International Films and Compass International Pictures are working with CineLife Entertainment to release a restored digital print of the original Halloween and 4 and 5 to any theaters that want to take them up through October 31st. Several places have already booked the movies, too, including Hummels Drive-in in Winchester, Indiana, and New York’s Kane Family Drive-In, to name a few.
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Drive-ins are now something of a rare breed in the United States, but have been one of the few theatrical venues to be allowed to stay open during the coronavirus lockdown. Capped parking, online-only sales, safety measures for concessions and regular cleaning of restrooms and facilities are being carried out to make sure that viewers aren’t exposed to any unnecessary risk. And with major and independent theater chains still facing an uncertain future, drive-ins are probably the most reliable option for a while for a safe moviegoing experience.
While Carpenter’s 1978 Halloween has classic status, it may be more difficult to entice audiences to the fourth and fifth parts of the franchise, which brought back Michael Myers after he was jettisoned for the third film in the series. Still, both sequels are enjoyable in their own ways, and lend themselves well to a drive-in setting. For anyone craving a moviegoing experience, or those who never had the chance to catch the original Halloween on the big screen, these drive-in screenings look like they’re going to be well worth attending.