How to Make Your Own Movie “Screen” for Outdoor Movies

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How to Make Your own Outdoor Movie Screen Tutorial
If you have access to a projector (or want to invest in one) you can EASILY set up your OWN outdoor movie theatre! We borrowed one to use for our movie night. Check out how we made our own movie “screen” for FREE!! It made an awesome family night!
First you’ll need a large flat piece of plywood – this will be your movie “screen”. We found this one out in someone’s front yard in the trash because the board was a bit warped. FREE!
Next you’ll need some white paint. We found this old bucket of leftover white semi-gloss paint on the side of the road after a house update project. FREE!
Then you’ll need yourself a good painter or two!! 🙂 I found two – for FREE! My boys had a BLAST painting their very own movie “screen”!!
It was an awesome and easy way to get them involved since it really didn’t matter what the paint looked like when it was done. As long as it’s all covered in white paint you’re good to go!
Then you’ll need somewhere for your “screen” to go. You can prop it up against a fence or a tree. My husband bolted ours up onto the side of our pool deck so that it was elevated. The higher off the ground you can get it is better.
We also affectionately called our DIY outdoor movie screen the Cherry Bowl II after our favorite family activity place – an old fashioned diner/drive-in in Michigan. (Check out the real Cherry Bowl here!)
Once you have the movie “screen” set up and your projector/laptop everything else is up to you! We set up our fire pit, blankets, drinks….

AND DON’T FORGET THE POPCORN!!!! Now snuggle up and enjoy some family time together! Invite some friends! The more the merrier!! When the weather is nice every Friday night we invite anyone that wants to come and we show a movie!


outdoor movie screen at night
Thanks to our friend Teresa for the inspiration!

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  1. mrsbjsmith says:

    Good idea!!! We just used an old large white sheet and pinned it up on an outside wall. Outdoor movies are so much fun!!!!

  2. The Teachers Wife says:

    Barb I'm not 100% sure to be honest. It is my husband's classroom projector that we borrow for the night…. We are hoping to buy one for ourselves in the next year but as you know other things come first 🙂

  3. TheSuburbanMom says:

    I love love love this idea! I wonder where I can find a projector…

  4. Mom vs. the boys says:

    Love it! I want to come over for a movie!

  5. Mrs. Gaither says:

    What projector did you use? We received one as a Christmas gift a couple of years ago, but it was too blurry and we took it back. I would love to be able to do this!
    meet me at the zoo…

  6. Mrs. Gaither says:

    I gave you an award on my blog–swing on over and grab it! Your a top 10!
    meet me at the zoo…

  7. says:

    I love this idea I just need a projector .

  8. Love this! Easy and simple! Great now that the summer is coming! We already have a projector too!

  9. Great idea! I stumbled this post!

  10. What a great idea! And best of all, it was FREE! 🙂 It looks like you guys had a great movie night!

  11. Sippy Cup Mom says:

    Brilliant! What a fun night!

  12. Mellissa Hanks says:

    What a great idea :O)

  13. Jennifer - Mommy to 2 says:

    I love the "free" painters. lol We need to paint our house…are they available? lol

  14. Lilac City Momma says:

    What an awesome idea!!

  15. The Queen of Swag says:

    very cute idea! pinned it!

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