In 1928, outdoor picture shows, along with travelling lantern slide and film screenings had been popular entertainment in country towns for close on 2 decades. Manilla people were quite accustomed to the phenomenon of the moving picture by the time the Palais Picture Theatre was constructed by Mr. R .Easterman as a prospective venture for the contractor, Mr. Williams. The theatre was leased to the Sydney-based Palais Theatre Co., which employed Mr. O. Lindsay in the role of Manager.
At the time - late 1920s - Manilla was desperate for a long-awaited water scheme, first discussed in 1912. The addition of a theatre to the townscape signalled prosperity, a likely increase in revenue for Council, and subsequently, an increase in its borrowing power. The building of the Palais was seen as a progressive move in tough times, a boost to morale and a renewal of faith in community cooperation.
The Palais was the site of much enjoyment for several generations of local people and remnants of "Bill's Bughouse" as it was affectionately known - glass advertising slides, film reels, ticket rolls and 'Pass Out' cards, are now held in the Manilla Community Collection at Manilla Heritage Museum.
Opening of The Palais Theatre1928
"I Remember" - 'The Palais' - Mr. D. Ridgewell
The Palais building was acquired by Manilla Shire Council during the latter years of the 20th century. It underwent structural alteration to accommodate a gymnasium and was eventually demolished in 1999.