Learning how to make an outdoor movie screen will help you achieve the backyard theater of your dreams. Add a Bluetooth speaker and a streaming stick, and you’ve got an entertainment system for the low cost of a few simple materials. If you want excellent picture quality, look into the best projectors on the market currently.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • There are several methods for making an outdoor screen, and they are all great DIY projects to bring your outdoor movie night to the next level.
  • Your first step will be to purchase standard supplies for backyard movie theaters, like string lights, a streaming stick, and an Amazon Bluetooth speaker.
  • Once you set everything up, you can build a quality outdoor screen using the yard space left to decide on the screen size and method you’ll be using.

Building an Outdoor Movie Screen

The steps explaining how to make an outdoor movie screen are straightforward. There are a few different methods, but they require similar materials and time. There are multiple options available to purchase, like a portable projector screen or inflatable movie screens. Movie projectors tend to be the best to use for a great outdoor viewing experience. If you’ve ever wondered, “What kind of projectors do movie theaters use?” then we have a great article on the topic.

Insider Tip

Any flat, white surface can be great for projection, so don’t be afraid to experiment with different surfaces if you don’t have a screen on hand.

STEP 1 Using a Shower Curtain Liner

This method won’t work with a transparent shower curtain liner. Instead, you need one that is solid white. You’ll attach 10-foot PVC pipes to either end of a shower curtain. Hang the curtain from this. Use an additional curtain rod to secure the bottom portion of the pipes on either side. Either secure it standing up or secure it against a wall. This unusual method tends to be successful. If you have an LED projector, you may wonder how suitable of a technique it is. The question, “How do LED projectors work?” can be answered by reading our article.

STEP 2 Using a Blackout Curtain

You’ll need a large amount of cloth for this method. A canvas drop cloth works just as well as a blackout version will. Take a long piece of PVC pipe and attach the cloth to it. You can install brackets on the wall of your house to hang the pipe in, which will create a rounded top. It doesn’t necessarily make the picture clearer, but it does look much cleaner than other methods.

STEP 3 Using a Blackout Curtain

You’ll need a large amount of cloth for this method. A canvas drop cloth works just as well as a blackout version will. Take a long piece of PVC pipe and attach the fabric to it. You can install brackets on the wall of your house to hang the pipe in, which will create a rounded top. It doesn’t necessarily make the picture clearer, but it does look much cleaner than other methods.

STEP 4 Using the Side of Your House

If you need a less formal way to watch your favorite movies, the side of a house or garage does just fine. Essentially, you can use any white, flat projection surface you’d like. This is a popular method for those only looking to project once in a while. You can also do this with gaming consoles for group gaming sessions.

Warning

Whenever setting up your projector outside, check the weather beforehand to make sure you don’t get your equipment ruined.

F.A.Q.S

What is the best material for the actual screen?

The best screen material for an outdoor projector screen is PVC or a similar material. These are heavy-duty and can withstand the elements.


What can I use for an outdoor projector screen?

Any white, flat projection surface will work wonderfully for your family movie night. The side of your house, a shower curtain, or even a white bed sheet is all you need.


How big should a backyard movie screen be?

First, consider the outdoor space available to you. If you have ample space, you can build a true-to-life outdoor theater for your next movie night.


How can I build an outdoor movie theater?

Make sure you have great speakers. An Amazon outdoor speaker makes a fantastic addition to your outdoor theater. Streaming devices are a must-have addition and add affordable options for entertainment.


STAT: Digital projection methods have become popular, leading to analog movie screens in the US dwindling. (source)

Beth Huston

Beth has an eye for all things editorial, overshadowed only by her drive to understand everything through dedicated research. You can find Beth reading fantasy in her spare time... especially if it's by Brandon Sanderson.

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