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The Academy Of Motion Pictures Museum

Inside The Starry Opening Party For Los Angeless Academy Museum Of Motion Pictures

Academy Museum of Motion Pictures | Opens September 30, 2021
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After several delays , next week marks the opening of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. Its a museum organized by the same group that gives us the Oscars each year, and the venue includes a 33,000-square-foot theater designed by Renzo Piano for public programming, performances, and movie premieres. The ultra-slick spherical glass and steel building looks like an otherworldly structure that landed smack dab in the middle of West Hollywood, while the museums exhibitions live in an adjoining Art Deco space that feels very Old Hollywood.

So, to celebrate the opening of this long-awaited museum of movies, a party was in orderand compiling the guest list wasnt so difficult. Unsurprisingly, Hollywoods best and brightest turned out for the eventpast and future Oscar winners among themand they ranged in craft from actors to directors to producers, all eager to take the museum in.

The evening culminated with an hour-long set by Gaga, who quick-changed into a sheer, sparkling number. Included in her setlist was a jazzy rendition of New York, New York which she dedicated to Leeyou can take the girl out of NYC but you can’t take the NYC out of her! The performance brought a standing ovation from the star-studded audience.

  • Photo: Getty Images

    Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom

  • Photo: Getty Images

    Kaia Gerber and Jacob Elordi

  • Sophie Hunter and Benedict Cumberbatch

You Can Hold Your Own Oscar

The museum allows visitors to hold an actual gold statue in The Oscar Experience . The immersive simulation puts guests through the experience of walking onto the Dolby Theatre stage in front of cheering crowds while holding the Oscar trophy each will walk away with a video ready for social media feeds.

A further draw for movie superfans are the major props and characters from some of the most beloved movies from the original R2-D2 to C-3P0 from “Star Wars,” an original “E.T.” alien and an animatronic Arnold Schwarzenegger T-1000 Terminator head from “Terminator 2: Judgment Day.”

A six-foot-tall Gourmand Skeksis puppet from “The Dark Crystal” required a museum restoration overhaul before it could take its fearsome place on the display.

“If you go to the museum you will see the beautiful work you couldn’t necessarily see watching the movie,” says Frank Oz, who co-directed Jim Henson’s film and worked the elaborate “Dark Crystal” puppets. “You also don’t see at the flip side, which is all the sweat and strain of making that character come alive, either.”

Some of that goes to movie magic, from a magical animation-themed Hayao Miyazaki exhibit to 19th-century French magic lanterns on display. After Hanksglimpsed at moviemaking artifacts from the 1800s in the museum’s “Paths to the Cinema” section, he, too, pushed back against the Death Star nickname.

Contributing: Andrea Mandell

Morgan Library Renovation And Extension

The extension of the in is next to the original library, a monument of designed by , which had been expanded several times. Piano extensively renovated the existing structures and a built a new building the same height as the historic building, with a simple rectangular facade that complemented it. He also added a six-meter cube as a small exhibit space, an underground auditorium with 199 seats, and a glass-walled atrium which united all the parts, old and new. The architecture critic of the New York Times, Nicolai Ouroussoff, wrote, “the result is a space with the weight of history and the lightness of clouds…a sublime expression of the architect’s preoccupation with light.”

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Inside The Academy Museum Of Motion Pictures

The L.A. institution finally opens, inviting visitors to learn about film historyeven the not so glittery bitsand to contemplate the industrys future

Does the museum really live up to its promise to be a definitive home to the art and science of movies?

I was worried that the long-awaited, $482 million Academy Museum of Motion Pictures would break my heart.

Years behind schedule, the 300,000-square-foot complex designed by the Pritzker prize-winning architect Renzo Piano had, as the joke goes, spent longer in development than Cleopatra. The state-of-the-art institution at long last opens its doors on a stretch of Los Angeles Wilshire Boulevard. Visually striking with not one, but two movie theaters , the seven-story museum is full of treasures from the Rosebud sled from Citizen Kane donated by Steven Spielberg to Bruce, the only surviving full-size shark model cast from the original mold used on Jaws. But the question that loomed before its opening was not about its collection , but whether it could really live up to its promise to be a definitive home to the art and science of movies.

The Wizard of OzJawsCitizen KaneReal Women Have CurvesThe Wiz

That is what Kramer and Stewart hope, at least.

Kramer agreed. We will help change the industry, he said. I dont think thats too lofty. And our members are helping us with that. These are members of the film industry who want to actively make change. So I think thats possible. I really do.

What Items In The Museums Collection Are Worth Seeing

New images show Renzo Piano

The Mona Lisa of this museum has got to be Dorothys ruby slippers from The Wizard of Oz, footwear with a history as twisty as a Dan Brown thriller. Five pairs were known to have survived the films production. One pair was buried in an MGM warehouse for 30 years, Indiana Jones-style, until it was accidentally unearthed in the 1970s. Another was on display at the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids but got stolen by Oz-loving cat burglars in 2005 .

Now one pair is on exhibit safely behind glass here at the Academy Museum. Beyond the ruby slippers, there are plenty of other historical artifacts to ogle: the only surviving fiberglass mold for Bruce the shark from Jaws , the typewriter used to tap out the screenplay for Alfred Hitchcocks Psycho, the tablets from The Ten Commandments, a space suit from 2001: A Space Odyssey, shelves filled with Oscars , a cape worn by Bela Lugosi in Dracula and prepare to be awed a robe worn by Jeff Bridges Dude in The Big Lebowski.

A museum attendee in the Oscar Experience exhibit.

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Critic’s Appreciation: Betty White Was As Important As She Was Beloved

Discussion of Debbie Reynolds suggestion of subsidizing the display of her vast collection of Old Hollywood memorabilia , planted the seed and prompted the hiring of Academy Museum staff in 2004 for a building that would have risen in Hollywood.

Locations, architects and curators came and went. The hirings, firings and an ultimate relocation to the Miracle Mile area were complete with plot twists redolent of a Robert Towne screenplay.

Constructed over six years, beginning in 2015, by the Pritzker Prize-winning architect Renzo Piano, together with his Renzo Piano Building Workshop and Gensler, as executive architect as well as innumerable world-class specialists of all manner to get the look and the mind-boggling technical craft involved in running the place exactly right the new Academy Museum has outpriced any blockbuster ever made in Hollywood. But the museum, opened on Sept. 30 at the corner of Fairfax Avenue and Wilshire Boulevard, was worth waiting for.

The monolithic Sphere Building around which the museums campus revolves acquired the nickname the Death Star amid construction. However, the exterior of this awe-inspiring structure brings to mind the otherworldly brutalist elegance that legendary production designer Ken Adam conjured for the all-time great 007 films like 1967s You Only Live Twice.

Bronwyn Cosgrave is the author of Made For Each Other: Fashion & the Academy Awards and the curator of Designing 007: Fifty Years of Bond Style.

Astrup Fearnley Museum Of Modern Art Oslo Norway

The in , Norway was designed to revive an old port and industrial area southwest of the center of Oslo with an art museum and offices, and to provide a destination and attraction on the edge of the picturesque fjord. The project has three buildings, two museum buildings and an office building, under a single glass roof, which covers 6000 square meters. The construction materials include both steel and wood beams. A canal and walkway connect the museum with another area under development nearby, while the museum and walkway offer views of the fjord and center of Oslo. A sculpture park with works of , and other notable sculptors is placed between the museum and the water. The museum building on one side of the canal holds permanent exhibits, while the building on the other side is used for temporary exhibits. A bridge over the canal the two museum buildings. The construction materials include steel, glass and wooden beams, while the facades that are not made of glass are covered with finely-crafted weathered panels, in the tradition of Scandinavian architecture.

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How Do I Get Tickets To The Academy Museum Of Motion Pictures

Timed tickets are required and include admission to all exhibitions. They cost $25 for adults, $19 for seniors , $15 for students, and are free for visitors 17 and younger and California residents with an EBT card.

An immersive installation dubbed the Oscars Experience costs an additional $15. Outdoor public areas and the lobby are free to access.

Backdrop: An Invisible Art

Academy Museum of Motion Pictures opens its doors to the public

The double-height Hurd Gallery is needed to spotlight both the artistry and the contested imagery of a monumental Mt. Rushmore backdrop used in Alfred Hitchcocks canonical 1959 spy thriller North by Northwest. This neck-craning exhibit also serves as a through-provoking reminder of oft-overlooked role of such literally behind-the-scenes creations, and their creators, in the movies that have helped shape our world.

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‘the Parthenon’ Of Film Museums

After false starts, the academy announced plans in 2012 to renovate the 1939 May Co. Wilshire building, a stunning Streamline Moderne structure and classic former department store, as the museum’s permanent home. The brand new, modern Sphere Building , which contains two state-of-the-art movie theaters and a viewing deck that provides stunning open-air views of the distant Hollywood sign, was built as a contrasting structure for the 300,000-square-foot, seven-story museum now part of Museum Row in Los Angeles’ Miracle Mile.

There have been building halts and budget overruns for the $484 million project. Even after Tom Hanks announced at the February 2020 Oscars that the museum would open later in the year, the COVID-19 pandemic forced additional delays. However, last week, board of trustees member Hanks, who spearheaded fundraising efforts with Annette Bening and Walt Disney Co. executive chairman Bob Iger, proudly heralded the lauded new building.

“We all know, films are made everywhere in the world, wonderful films,” Hanks told reporters. “And there are other cities with film museums, but with all due respect, created by the Motion Picture Academy in Los Angeles, this museum has really got to be the Parthenon of such places.”

Spielberg, who donated $10 million toward the movie museum, also loaned one of his greatest movie mementos, an original surviving “Rosebud” sled, the emotional centerpiece from Orson Welles’ classic film “Citizen Kane.”

California Academy Of Sciences Renovation And Extension San Francisco

In 1989, after their old museum buildings were damaged by an earthquake, the trustees of the decided to rebuild their entire complex of twelve buildings, including an aquarium, planetarium, and a museum of Natural History, located in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. Piano’s plan called for “a group of volumes under a single roof, a little like a village.” The roof itself, 1.5 hectares in area, was covered with vegetation, and blends with the surrounding park. The facade of the building also harmonizes smoothly with the nearby turn-of-the-century greenhouse that is a landmark of the Park. Three cupolas are placed under the high roof, ceiling, lit by natural light through round portholes on their roofs they contain the entry hall, a botanical garden, and a planetarium. Piano’s design for the new building was described by the New York Times as a “comforting reminder of the civilizing function of great art in a barbaric age”.

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Whats The Oscars Experience And Is It Worth It

Consider this the made-for-Instagram experience at the museum. The Oscars Experience lets you step up to a podium with bright lights and a virtual crowd in your face as your accept your award: an undedicated Oscar, identical to the ones given out during the Academy Awards, that you can pick up . Youre only inside for a few seconds, and youll be emailed a personalized, polished video of your award acceptance. Its well put together, but remarkably expensive for just how brief it is only plunk down the $15 if being able to say I held an Oscar is a must.

Academy Museum Of Motion Pictures Is Ready For Its Closeup


By Stephanie Elam, CNN

Artifacts from icons like Spike Lee and Pedro Almodóvar, the iconic Dorothy ruby slippers from “The Wizard of Oz,” Okoye’s costume from “Black Panther, you’ll find them within the seven story, 300,000 square-foot Academy Museum of Motion Pictures which is finally ready for its closeup.

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Valletta City Gate And Parliament House

The ‘City Gate’ project in , Malta was the complete reorganization of the principal entrance to the Maltese capital of Valletta. It included a massive through the , an open-air theatre machine within the ruins of the former , and the construction of a new Parliament building. The gate project was controversial, though the old gate it replaced was only built in the 1960s, in the Italian rationalist style. The “theater machine” is particularly unusual the original idea was that in summertime a steel portable theater with stage and wings and a thousand seats can be installed inside the ruins of the 19th century opera house, which had been destroyed in World War II. It has its own stage equipment and technology for reproducing the acoustics of a traditional opera house. When performances are not taking place, the “machine” was meant to turn back into a public square and gathering place. The is a mixture of modern technique and technology with the massive stone look of the city’s old walls.

Whats So Special About The Location

What isnt special about this location? Its hard to imagine a more fitting spot for a movie museum. Back in the 1920s, silent film mogul Cecil B. DeMille another of the Academys founders built an airfield on this very corner of Fairfax and Wilshire for his fleet of dirigibles and barnstormers. Ultimately, DeMilles Mercury Aviation Company took a nosedive after the stock market crash of 1929.

In 1939, the May Company Wilshire department store sprang up on the property, with architect Albert C. Martin Sr. designing a groundbreaking deco edifice with a cylindrical section that looked like a gigantic tube of lipstick emerging from the primitive L.A. skyline. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art took over the May building in 1994, christening it LACMA West, until the Academy snatched the property in 2014, eventually renaming it the Saban Building .

Famed Italian architect Renzo Piano was hired in 2017 to refurbish and repurpose the building already an L.A. historic landmark with an opening date originally scheduled for 2020. But funding snafus, a global pandemic and other hiccups delayed its completion until now.

Judy Garland’s ruby slippers from “The Wizard of Oz” on display at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures.

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Visiting The Academy Museum Of Motion Pictures With Kids

17 Indoor Forts Perfect for Winter Days

Is there anything better than watching your favorite movies? Immersing yourself in those unique stories that make you double over with laughter, blubber like a baby, shriek in terror, or think of the world in a whole new way? The brand-new Academy Museum of Motion Pictures celebrates everything we love about cinema. With a dynamic array of exhibitions, interactive experiences, screenings and programs, the museum not only features an extensive look at the history of movies, but also hopes to inspire the next generation of filmmakers. Every exhibit is captivating in its own right, but here are some must-sees that will definitely excite kids at LA’s newest museum.

In Los Angeles A New Museum Celebrates The Art Of Moviemaking

Academy Museum Of Motion Pictures Finally Opening

Not to brag, but I recently received an Academy Award.

As I took the stage, that wonderfully schmaltzy Oscars music began to play and a giant chyron with the words And the Oscar goes to … appeared on a movie screen in front of me. My name flashed onto the screen, the music swelled and an audience in evening wear gave me a standing ovation. I took the heavy statuette in my hand and, wouldnt you know it, flubbed my acceptance speech, even though my win was a sure thing.

Full disclosure: This happened at the newly opened Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles. A well-done, if slightly gimmicky, feature of the long-anticipated new museum is called The Oscars Experience. For an extra $15, visitors get the virtual experience of winning their own Academy Award. Its not the kind of thing I usually go for, but during a recent visit, I adopted a When in Tinseltown attitude and scheduled myself for a midday Oscar win. After typing my name and email address into a computer , I took my place backstage and waited as ambient audience sounds played, complete with random coughing.

Lichterman is a writer based in Los Angeles. Find her on Twitter and Instagram .

Please Note

Academy Museum of Motion Pictures

6067 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles



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Projects Under Construction Or In Development

  • Science Center for Mind Brain Behavior. part of the new Manhattanville Campus of in , , . Besides the Greene science center, the RPBW is building the Lenfest Center for the Arts, the Forum, and the School of International and Public Affairs.
  • in Los Angeles, a conversion of the former May Company Department Store , an landmark.
  • in , . Under construction and scheduled to open in 2022.
  • Ontario Court of Justice, , . Under construction and scheduled to open in early 2022.
  • Float Office Building, , Germany, to be completed in 2018,
  • It has been announced that the Piano firm would partner with a Baltimore firm to design the Agora Institute on the campus of The .
  • In April 2019 it was announced that will be partnering with the Renzo Piano Building Workshop for its new Science Gateway outreach center.
  • Cultural Center in former power plant GES-2 from 1907 in , financed by Leonid Mikhelson, boss of power company Novatek, opening is planned for September 2020.

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