Location: 745 Clement Street at Ninth Avenue, San Francisco, CA
Architects: Reid Brothers
Opened: November 1918
First film: "Johanna Enlists"
Closed and remodeled: 1952 - 1956
Closed permanently: October 17, 1989
Last film: "Field of Dreams"
The history and significance of the Coliseum Theatre is well-documented in the Palaces of the Past article. You can read what going to the Coliseum was like in the 1930s in Pat French Swendsen's column, Remembering the Coliseum.
The old building, its marquee and vertical now pulled down, has been transformed into 14 condominiums and a Walgreens storefront. Prices for the new homes ranged from $665,000 to $1,128,000.
San Francisco Chronicle, November 22, 1918
Coliseum Theater Dedicated Tonight
"The residents of the Park-Presidio district will tonight participate in the dedication of the new Coliseum Theater, Ninth avenue and Clement street, which will contribute the entire box-office receipts to the Red Cross. Mary Pickford in 'Johanna Enlists' will be the initial attraction.
"Mayor Rolph, John A. Britton, for the Red Cross, and Meyer J. Cohen, of the United Motion Picture Industries, will speak. George W. Scott, president of the Park-Presidio Merchants' Association, Colonel T.F. Robinson, president of the Point Lobos Improvement Club, and Louis F. Erbe, president of the Park-Presidio Improvement Club, will represent their organizations.
"In addition to the Mary Pickford film, a Mack Sennet comedy and the Pathe News are billed."
San Francisco Chronicle, February 14, 1929
Coliseum Installing Talkies Equipment
"The Coliseum Theater, 745 Clement street, is installing Vitaphone and Movietone instruments, and, beginning Monday night, will become a 'talkie' house. The first dialogue picture to be shown will be Al Jolson in 'The Jazz Singer,' which will be kept for four days. In it Jolson sings the Jewish chant 'Kol Nidre' as well as several other numbers. Warner Oland and Eugenie Besserer are prominent in the cast. A new service staff, trained to the nines by Leonard J. Williams, formerly with West Coast and Publix theaters in the Northwest, will begin its work at the same time."
Images: 1) "The Coliseum" condominiums, August 2002; 2) Coliseum Theatre building, October 2001 (WNP photo); 3) Clement and Ninth Avenue - 1927, (Courtesy of J.E. Tillmany.)
Page updated 11 October 2002