Everything you need to make your own outdoor movie theatre

It's definitely easier and probably more affordable than you imagined to make a screening room under the stars.

It's definitely easier and probably more affordable than you imagined to make a screening room under the stars

(Credit: Getty Images)

Canadian summer is a fleeting season and it must be taken advantage of in every possible way. Before you know it, you'll be spending 8 months under a blanket with the heat cranked up, so, while you can, do as many things outside as possible. One great way to do this is taking your summer blockbuster-bingeing outdoors and you can DIY your own scenic cinema. Here's what you need to create one a movie theatre in your own backyard.


Remember those gigantic, 3-light projectors? We've come a long way since then. This sleek projector is compact and portable, but able to project on screens from 127 cm to 330 cm in size, in full high definition. Multiple ports make it easy to hook up to your streaming stick, DVD player, gaming console, laptop or phone, meaning it could also replace your TV should you choose to use it indoors.

Elephas Mini Video Projector, $109.99, amazon.ca

Projector screen

Your projector is just part of the equation, of course. While you certainly make it ultra-rustic with a white sheet or a blank wall, this canvas screen can keep your movies looking sharp. This 16:9 formatted screen displays a 227 cm x 132 cm projection and is frameless, allowing you to hang it with rope, velcro or nails. Simply iron the screen to remove any wrinkles and fold it up into a small bag for easy storage.

Projector Screen, $35, amazon.ca

Pop-up screen

If you don't have a large enough area to hang your screen, or you want to take your show on the road, this pop-up screen would definitely do the trick. It's spring-loaded for instant set up, with a 213 cm viewing area, weighing only 6 pounds. It provides 160 degree viewing area, so it can be seen clearly from multiple angles.

Portable Spring-Famed Indoor Outdoor Projection Screen, $97.99, amazon.ca

Bluetooth speaker

While it would be nice to run some concert-quality speakers out there, space and wiring in the backyard is usually limited (not to mention the potential for complaints from neighbours), so something a little more concentrated is best. Weighing just under one pound, this bluetooth speaker is splashproof and has a strong enough battery to allow up to 15 hours of play time. With full-spectrum audio for clear listening at any volume, the speaker also has a range up to 30 feet, so it can easily accommodate a backyard setup.

Portable Bluetooth Wireless Speaker, $45.99, amazon.ca

Inflatable lounger

Watching a 3-hour movie in a lawn chair would be a little uncomfortable and, short of dragging your recliner across the deck, this is the next best thing. This versatile inflatable lounger can be used in a variety of ways, with specially designed back and neck rests to keep you comfortable however you use it. With side pockets for your drinks and accessories, the lounger comes with a lifetime warranty and can support up to 500 pounds. But best of all is its no-breath inflation - hold it open to catch the wind and it can be fully set up in 10 seconds.

Vansky Inflatable Lounger, $49.99, amazon.ca

Outdoor popcorn popper

A movie without snacks is no movie at all and this outdoor popcorn maker is a classic addition. An aluminium kettle with an 18-inch handle, it can make 4 quarts of perfectly-popped popcorn in 5 minutes over your bonfire, campfire or backyard grill.

Outdoor Popcorn Popper, $61.10, amazon.ca

Utility wagon

If you're having company over for an all-night binge, you'll also need something to hold and transport your snacks and drinks. This wagon folds and sets up in seconds, is able to hold up to 150 pounds and is made with an easy to clean fabric. It contains four cup holders and has a pop-up rear folding table, so you can snack for hours without taking your eyes off the screen.

Collapsible Outdoor Utility Wagon, $201.85, amazon.ca