It wouldn't be summer in London without an onslaught of pop-up outdoor cinemas and rooftop film screenings. Whether you're into classic flicks or the newest releases, check out where you can get your al fresco film fix in summer 2019.
The Nomad Cinema 2019
Charity pop-up screen Nomad Cinema has shown films in impressive venues including Brompton Cemetery, Leadenhall Market and Grosvenor Square in the past. We've always been fans of its work, because it raises money for charity. It's a volunteer-run social enterprise, with 100% of profits going to The Sustainability Institute, a development programme in South Africa.
Unfortunately for fans, it's taking a little break from its usually-hectic schedule in summer 2019.
That's not to day it's gone completely — there are still occasional screenings planned, including monthly screenings at the Hoxton. See the website for upcoming events, and cross your fingers it'll be back with a vengeance in 2020.
If you're missing your Nomad fix too much, go and see a film at Lexi, the Kensal Green cinema where Nomad began.
Rooftop Film Club 2019 screenings
King of the summer cinema scene Rooftop Film Club usually brings screenings to rooftops in Peckham, Shoreditch and Stratford, along with occasional other venues (we found ourselves atop an Ealing multi-storey one memorable May evening a few years back...)
RFC's winning formula involved mixing cult classics with new releases such and perennial favourites. Food and drink is available from well-stocked bars and carefully-selected food vendors.
Our recommendation? Head for the Bussey Building in Peckham for seriously impressive views over the London skyline at sunset.
The season usually runs May-September. Keep an eye on the website for 2019 details — and book quickly, as screenings usually sell out.
The Luna Cinema's 2019 screenings
A worthy rival to the aforementioned Nomad Cinema is Luna. The mobile movie theatre travels all over the country (175 screenings in 2018!). Past London venues have included Westminster Abbey, Greenwich Park, Hampton Court Palace, and the annual classic, Jaws on a dinghy in Brockwell Lido. Never gets old, that one.
Last year the summer season ran May-October. At time of writing, only spring dates have been announced. You know what to do... watch this space.
Royal Opera House's BP Big Screens 2019
Who says nothing in this life is free? Entry to these livestreamed Royal Opera House screenings is. Big screens pop at locations including Trafalgar Square on three different dates across the summer, opening the likes of Swan Lake, La bohéme and Don Giovanni to a wider audience. We're promised it'll be back for 2019, with dates TBC. It ran through June and July last year so expect similar this year.
Hyde Park Summertime Festival 2019
Even if you haven't got tickets for the blockbuster music gigs that headline Hyde Park's British Summer Time festival, you're invited to Open House, the weekday events that take place in the park between the gigs, including street food markets, sports events and open-air film screenings. Open House takes place 9-11 July 2019, with screening details yet to be announced.
Film4 Summer Screen at Somerset House 2019
Once again for a fortnight in August, that cobbled courtyard of Somerset House houses a giant cinema screen, with crowds huddling round for screenings. The exact films are usually announced about May — expect an edgier, more unique selection of films than the crowd-pleasers at other venues. Not that that usually stops it selling out.