Obit: Movie pioneer Arthur Cohen (1880-1975)

Arthur Cohen, the Canadian movie industry pioneer, was a leader of Toronto’s Jewish community and a philanthropist. He died of a heart attack at the age of 94, the Canadian Jewish News reported on March 7, 1975.

Cohen was the son of Magistrate Jacob Cohen and Lena Jacobs Cohen. He attended Jarvis Collegiate, from which he graduated with a scholarship in 1898. He won a gold medal at Osgoode Hall Law School, from which he graduated in 1904.

He worked as chief examiner of Osgoode Hall from 1905 to 1908, then turned to the silver screen. He was one of the first to build and operate a movie theatre in Toronto. In 1917 he began as secretary-treasurer and worked his way up to managing director of Famous Players Corporation, from which he retired in 1933.

Cohen was president of Holy Blossom Temple from 1928 to 1931. In 1937 he was a founding membering of the Federation of Jewish Philanthropies, which later became the United Jewish Appeal.

He was chairman of the building committee of the new Mount Sinai Hospital and later served on its board of directors.

He was survived by his daughters, Mrs. Carol Caplan of Toronto and Mrs. Enid Lichter of Honolulu, as well as four grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.♦

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