March 1938, 1 Schillerplatz
The Kolosseum Cinema is leased out by its Jewish owner in order to prevent it being “Aryanised”. A former employee blows the whistle on the attempted camouflage.
The Kolosseum Cinema was the picture palace with the longest history in Linz. In the 1920s is was to be found on Mozartstraße but as a result of the world wide economic crisis, the Kolosseum company had to sell the large building with its variety theatre and hotel and built a new cinema building on Schillerplatz. From the time it was opened at the end of 1936 it was the most popular cinema in Linz.
From the 1st of January 1938 the cinema belonged to the married couple Alfred and Elsa Epstein, as well as Friederike Sela-Hedin Bey, and was thus “Jewish owned” as far as the Nazis were concerned. The attempt to lease the cinema to an “Aryan” director in order to camouflage it failed: a former cinema employee informed the provincial economic consultant about the ploy. The director, Ludwig Marx, had hoisted a swastika flag on the 12th of March and falsely presented himself as a party member and acting administrator even though he was very well informed about the Jewish owners. He was relieved of his post and a new acting administrator was appointed.
From the 2nd of August 1938 on, all formerly “Jewish film theatres” on Austrian soil were placed under the control of the Vienna branch of the Reich Chamber of Film. The Kolosseum was given to NSDAP member Hermann Kube as acting business manager.