Coliseum Cinema

310 Main Avenue,
Tillamook, OR 97141

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Related Websites

Coliseum Cinema - Tillamook (Official)

Additional Info

Architects: Frank Hyde

Functions: Movies (First Run)

Phone Numbers: Box Office: 503.842.6111
Manager: 503.842.6111

Nearby Theaters


The Coliseum Cinema was opened in 1923. Alive and well in September of 2003, the Coliseum Cinema had a showy combination sign and marqee. In white letters outlined in red and accented with neon, “Cinema” was spelled vertically with “Coliseum” on either side and stars on both sides on a light blue background.

Contributed by Don Lewis

Recent comments (view all 9 comments)

rroberts on January 17, 2005 at 1:23 am

I have been in that theatre. What is their schedule now? Do they do movies, live theatre?

rroberts on September 27, 2006 at 8:24 pm

Don: Is there any change of ownership?

GaryParks on April 15, 2007 at 10:08 pm

I saw and photographed this theatre’s exterior last week. One of the young women who work there apologized that the COLISEUM name was not lit up on one side of the marquee. She said that the firm who built and maintained the present marquee was from Portland and had gone out of business, and the theatre staff had yet to find a new neon contractor to take care of the problem.

We were let into the tiny and plain lobby. There is a photo on the lobby wall of the theatre exterior when new, which shows a vertical sign to the right of the facade. Below this is a little written tribute to the theatre, written by a longtime patron.

kencmcintyre on January 11, 2008 at 4:42 pm

There are some older photos on the pstos page:

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 27, 2009 at 8:18 pm

For many years, the Coliseum was operated by a fellow named Dude Smith. That’s how he was styled in many issues of Boxoffice Magazine from the 1930s through the 1950s. Other issues give his formal name of Claude H. Smith, but I prefer Dude.

Dude bought the Coliseum and another Tillamook house, the Castle, in the mid-1930s. In 1952, he opened a drive-in nearby called the Tillavue. At some time he added the Columbia Theatre at St. Helens, Oregon, to his holdings. He operated all these theaters until his death, at which time (according to Boxoffice’s issue of March 4, 1963) they were taken over by the administrator of his estate, a Mr. Gus Elbow Jr.

A small photo of Dude Smith accompanies a thumbnail biography of him, commemorating his twenty years in movie exhibition, published in the March 17, 1945, issue of Boxoffice. The last line of the biography reads “His hobby is exploitation.”

I think Dude deserves a plaque in the Coliseum’s lobby.

SteveFratelli on January 28, 2015 at 1:08 pm

This theater was closed for the better part of 2014 as it transitioned into new ownership. Ted Bump, owner since 1995 handed the keys over to Shiela & Matthew Zerngast in August of 2014.

They went into remodel mode with a new snack bar and digital conversion. The City of Tillamook gave them a $35,000 grant from the Urban Renewal Fund whicj allowed them to put new carpet & tiles in the lobby as well as a heat pump for the front area. The auditorium was the only part that had warmth until then.

The Grand Opening was Nov. 1 with showings of BoxTrolls & Gone Girl. They also have live performances too with Comedy nights and a Hypnotist show. The next step is to reopen the balcony with 21+ seating serving beer and wine. The space might evolve into a second screen. I counted 234 seats on the main floor.

the new website is and the FB page is Tillamook Coliseum Theater. Both sites have before & after photos of the remodeling and grand opening.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 4, 2018 at 8:23 pm

This item, complete with misspellings and the wrong name for the theater, is probably about this house, and is from the May 12, 1923, issue of The Moving Picture World:

“Partridge and Morrison are building a new house in Tilamook, Oregon.– It will be called the Tilamook, will seat 750 and cost approximately $80,000. Frank Hyde, a local architect, drew the plans. B. F. Shearer, Inc., of Seattle, has charge of equipment, decorating and lighting of the house.”

DavidZornig on July 3, 2018 at 4:17 pm

2 post card images added via Bob Culpepper. Coliseum on the left in both, late 50s and mid60s.

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