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Open Roof Festival | Courtesy of Open Roof Festival
Open Roof Festival | Courtesy of Open Roof Festival
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Toronto Outdoor Cinema Guide: Summer 2016

Picture of Melanie Glasbergen
Updated: 10 August 2016
With the last of the cool spring days and nights becoming a distant memory, Torontonians are enjoying the sunny days outside at the many festivals and events happening all summer long. And the fun doesn’t stop once the sun sets. Several of Toronto’s parks and outdoor spaces are offering film screenings, most for free, throughout the summer. So grab a blanket, pop some popcorn, and cozy up with friends and family to enjoy some great films underneath the stars. Here’s a round-up of some of the best outdoor cinemas in Toronto for summer 2016.
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Harbourfront Free Flicks

Now in its 14th year, The Harbourfront is screening family-friendly flicks like Mean Girls and Strange Brew every Wednesday night starting June 22, 2016. Films begin after sundown, usually between 8:30 pm and 9:00 pm, and the venue is mostly covered and has seating.

Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay W., Toronto, ON, Canada, +1 416 973 4000

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Bollywood Classic Film Series

The Aga Kahn Museum is hosting a series of Bollywood films from the 1960s to the present day. Although most of the films being shown are ticketed, the upcoming August 13th screening of Jodhaa Akbar is playing outside in the Aga Khan’s stunning courtyard and is free.

Aga Kahn Museum, 77 Wynford Dr., Toronto, ON, Canada, +1 416 646 4677

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Sail-In Cinema

Toronto’s largest outdoor theatre event and one of the most fascinating outdoor cinemas of the summer is the annual Sail-In Cinema at Sugar Beach. From August 18-20, 2016 free movies will be screened on a two-sided screen atop of a barge on Lake Ontario. The line-up is suitable for the whole family and includes crowd pleasing classics Hook (18th), Jumanji (19th) and The Princess Bride (20th).

Sugar Beach, 25 Dockside Dr., Toronto, ON, Canada

Everything really is better on the water 🎬⛵ #sailincinema #etgohome #lovethiscity

A photo posted by Emily Burgess (@emburgess92) on

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City Cinema at Yonge-Dundas Square

Grab a lawn chair or blanket and head on down to Yonge-Dundas Square to catch a free double feature at sundown. Every Tuesday starting June 28th and running until August 30, 2016, the National Film Board will show a film followed by a funny film (this year’s theme) like Bridesmaids and the classic Coming to America.

Yonge-Dundas Square, 1 Dundas St. E., Toronto, ON, Canada, +1 416 979 9960

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Movies in St. James Park

Every last Thursday of June, July and August, St. James Park hosts free film screenings, starting around 9:00 pm. Get there early as some of the films are preceded by live entertainment like June’s screening of Kinky Boots, which will follow a drag show at 8:00 pm.

St. James Park, 120 King St. E., Toronto, ON, Canada, +1 416 392 2489

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Cultra Festival

Every Friday in July, Mel Lastman Square comes alive with family-friendly entertainment including buskers and interactive art installations, followed by a free movie screening when the sun sets.

Mel Lastman Square, 5100 Yonge St., Toronto, ON, Canada, +1 416 338 3343

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Under The Stars Screening Series

A free ten-week screening series outside Daniels Spectrum in Regent Park begins June 18, 2016. Popcorn and refreshments will be sold, and if it rains, the films will take place inside the Daniels Spectrum building.

Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas St. E., Toronto, ON, Canada, +1 416 238 2453

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Film Night at Trinity Bellwoods Park

For one night only, Trinity Bellwoods will be showing a series of National Film Board shorts from the Best of the Best: Especially for Kids series on June 22nd starting at 7:30 pm. The films will be playing in the ‘dog bowl’, and there will be refreshments available to purchase.

Trinity Bellwoods Park, 790 Queen St. W., Toronto, ON, Canada, +1 416 338 4386

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Open Roof Festival

The Open Roof Festival returns to Toronto for its seventh year celebrating indie music and film. Every Tuesday and Wednesday night starting June 21, 2016, enjoy live music at 8:00 pm followed by a movie at 9:00 pm. Tickets are only $15, and the venue is really on a rooftop. Alcohol and other refreshments are available to purchase.

99 Sudbury St. Toronto, ON

That's a wrap on another successful season! Thank you Toronto! #OpenRoofFest15 #MoviesMusicBeer #Toronto

A photo posted by Open Roof Festival (@openrooffestival) on

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Christie Pits Film Festival

The ever-popular Christie Pits Film Festival is back for its sixth year and happens every Sunday starting June 26, 2016. This year’s series is called ‘Stranded in Christie Pits’ and will feature films like Gravity and Cast Away, which explore the themes of isolation, confinement, escape, and perseverance.

Christie Pits Park, 750 Bloor St. W., Toronto, ON, Canada, +1 416 338 4386

Oh la la! Just 4 weeks til showtime! #CPFF15

A photo posted by Christie Pits Film Festival (@christiepitsff) on