Movie museum to show film’s magic; opening late 2019

| January 3, 2019 | 0 Comments

ACADEMY MUSEUM OF MOTION PICTURES, Where Dreams are Made: A Journey Inside the Movies, concept illustration for “Real World” gallery. Academy Museum Foundation / Gallery Design, Rick Carter and Gallagher Associates, Artist Illustration, Erik Tiemens. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri (2017), Twentieth Century Fox; Frida (2002), Miramax, Brokeback Mountain (2005), Universal Studios Licensing LLC.; Bonnie and Clyde (1967), Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc., Enter the Dragon (1973), Warner Bros Entertainment Inc.

Visitors to the new Academy Museum of Motion Pictures (AMMP) will be immersed in the magic and dreamscape of cinema. At least that’s the goal for the $388-million museum under construction at the corner of Wilshire Blvd. and Fairfax Ave. It is set to open at the end of 2019.

“This [will be] an extraordinary place… one of the great architectural masterpieces,” Ron Meyer, chair, board of trustees, said at a press briefing last month announcing the opening.

“It’s a dream come true,” and years in the making, Dawn Hudson, CEO, told the 110 in attendance at the rooftop penthouse of the Petersen Automotive Museum.

Across the street, the restored Saban Building (the former iconic May Co.) will house the new movie museum adjacent to the new Sphere Building, which will feature the 1,000-seat David Geffen Theater and the glass-domed, rooftop Dolby Family Terrace.

The 300,000-square foot, six-story museum will be devoted to the past, present and future.

“You’re going to shift from the real world to a sort of dream space, like a lucid dream… [but] wake enough to understand how magic is created,” museum Director Kerry Brougher said.

ACADEMY DIGNITARIES, left to right, Doris Berger, Jessica Niebel, President John Bailey, CEO Dawn Hudson, Director Kerry Brougher and Deborah Horowitz.

Two theaters

Two theaters will have digital laser projectors as well as show movies in their original 16 millimeter, 35 millimeter or 70 millimeter formats, and equipped to project early nitrate prints.

Film would become the greatest art form of the 20th and now the 21st century, “and it continues to expand… I think we still might be in the beginning phases…” said Brougher.

The museum’s 50,000 square feet of gallery space and multi-screen installations will take visitors behind the scenes to show how movies are made and explore their impact on society and culture.

Miyazaki on exhibit

The “grand master of Japanese animation,” Hayao Miyazaki, will be featured in the museum’s inaugural temporary exhibit, said exhibitions curator Jessica Niebel.

In collaboration with the filmmaker’s Studio Ghibli in Japan, the exhibit will be the filmmaker’s first U.S. retrospective.

His full body of work, including the animated fantasy films “Spirited Away” and “My Neighbor Totoro,” will be presented through screenings as well as 200 concept sketches, cels, storyboards and film clips.

“We wanted to come out of the gate with an international figure to show that this [museum] wasn’t going to be just about Hollywood but have a global perspective,” said Brougher.

The exhibit, “Regeneration: Black Cinema 1900-1970,” will follow in the Fall of 2020. A winner of the 2018 Sotheby’s Prize for breaking new ground, the exhibit will reveal the under-recognized history of African American filmmakers.

Long-term exhibit

The opening long-term exhibit, “Where Dreams Are Made: A Journey Inside the Movies,” will occupy 30,000 square feet on two floors of the Saban Building.

It begins with “Making of: The Wizard of Oz” in the Spielberg Family Gallery located in the Grand Lobby, where the script and production drawings, as well as Dorothy’s ruby slippers, will be on display.

An ascent to the second floor will lead visitors into the dream space of cinema and the Magic and Motion gallery which brings back the 19th century wonder of optical illusions and devices that made still images move.

“Zoetropes and penny arcades were the iphones of their times,” said Deborah Horowitz, deputy director, creative content and programming.

The Lumière and Méliès gallery will exhibit the earliest films including moving images by stage magician-turned filmmaker Georges Méliès.

The museum’s two-story, 34-foot high Hurd Gallery will open with “Transcending Boundaries” by the Tokyo-based art collective teamLab.

Exhibitions at AMMP will draw from the museum collections, which number nearly 3,000 items, relating to costume and production design, makeup and hairstyling, memorabilia and awards. In addition, there are 12 million photographs, 80,000 screenplays and Oscar statues.

Since 1929

Academy members first mused about a museum back in 1929.

“This museum has exceeded all of our forefather expectations, and foremothers — we can’t forget Mary Pickford,” said Hudson.

Pickford’s Bell & Howell film camera and a corduroy ensemble she wore in a 1921 film are among items in the museum collection.

Museum design architect Renzo Piano, via a video feed, said the history, artistry and science of film will be told from the light-filled lobby, through the multiple galleries and theaters, and up to the Dolby Terrace — which will open onto views of the city landscape and the Hollywood sign.


Category: Entertainment

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