Academy Museum of Motion Pictures

Coordinates: 34°3′48″N 118°21′39″W / 34.06333°N 118.36083°W / 34.06333; -118.36083
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Academy Museum of Motion Pictures
The Saban Building, a restored 1939 Streamline Moderne May Company building (2021)
Location6067 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, California
United States
Coordinates34°3′48″N 118°21′39″W / 34.06333°N 118.36083°W / 34.06333; -118.36083
TypeMotion picture history
Collection sizeover 13 million objects
DirectorBill Kramer (since 2019)
ArchitectRenzo Piano
Kulapat Yantrasast[1]
OwnerAcademy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Public transit access D Line  Wilshire/Fairfax (2024)
Bus interchange 20 Bus interchange 720
The Sphere at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in March 2021.

The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures is a museum in Los Angeles, California constructed by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), which is devoted to the history, science, and cultural impact of the film industry. It is the first large-scale museum of its kind in the United States.[2][3] The museum is located in the historic May Company Building on the intersection Wilshire Boulevard and Fairfax Avenue,[1] part of Museum Row on the Miracle Mile.

Originally expected to open in 2020, its completion and opening was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[3] The museum eventually opened to selected celebrity guests on September 25, 2021,[4] and to the general public on September 30.[5][6]

On July 14, 2022, the museum voluntarily recognized Academy Museum Workers United as the bargaining representative for 160 of its employees.[7]


The design of the museum was overseen by Italian architect Renzo Piano. The exterior of the May Company building, dedicated as the Saban Building following a $50 million donation from Cheryl and Haim Saban,[8] was refurbished with new limestone, as well as new gold leaf tiles for its corner "cylinder".[9]

The Saban Building's lobby includes two exhibit areas, the Spielberg Family Gallery and the Marilyn and Jeffrey Katzenberg Gallery.[10][11][12] The Shirley Temple Education Studio will be devoted to workshops on filmmaking, and include a collection of items and memorabilia from Shirley Temple's career.[13]

A spherical structure was built as an extension of the main Saban Building, connected via skyways, which features the glass-domed Dolby Family Terrace. The museum features two theater halls that will be used for film screenings, programming, and other special events; the 1,000-seat David Geffen Theater in the Sphere, and the smaller, 288-seat Ted Mann Theater in the lower level of the Saban Building.[12][14][15]


The Academy holds more than 13 million objects including costumes, costume sketches, film reels, posters, props, and screenplays dating back to 1927.[1] In May 2020, the museum purchased the May Queen dress worn by Florence Pugh in Midsommar (2019) for $65,000, as part of a charity auction held by A24 to benefit COVID-19 relief efforts.[16]

Some key objects in the Museum's collection include:[citation needed]


The second and third floors of the museum will feature the opening exhibition "Stories of Cinema".[19] The inaugural temporary collection of the Marilyn and Jeffrey Katzenberg Gallery is devoted to Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki.[2][20] The exhibition opened on September 30, 2021, and was on view until June 5, 2022. This was the first time Miyazaki’s work was featured in a major retrospective in the United States. The collection also displayed pieces on public view for the first time outside of Japan.[21] The 11,000-square-foot exhibition features more than 300 objects, including original image boards, character designs, storyboards, layouts, backgrounds, posters, and cels. The exhibition’s curators, Jessica Niebel and assistant curator J. Raúl Guzmán worked with Studio Ghibli and the Ghibli Museum in Japan to gather all the materials. There are also interactive installations displayed throughout the exhibit, the “Mother Tree,” Skyview, and Magical Forest, to name a few, each inspired by a different Miyazaki Film.[22]

Following that will be an exploration of the history of black cinema through 1971.[1]

Galleries in the museum will be dedicated to a variety of topics. Inaugural galleries will cover:[1]

An area featuring Oscar statuettes will be dedicated to historic Oscar winners, including Ang Lee, Barry Jenkins, Sidney Poitier, and Buffy Sainte-Marie.

A "largely uncritical" exhibit on the history of the film industry, slated to be called "Where Dreams Are Made: A Journey Inside the Movies", was scrapped by Kramer to be replaced with a more "complex, complete" exhibit.[1]

Board of trustees[edit]

The museum's board of trustees includes:

Film premieres[edit]

The museum will also be a site for Los Angeles premieres of new films.[23][24] Films that have held premieres here include:


The museum has attracted criticism for a perceived lack of focus on Jewish industry pioneers such as Carl Laemmle and Jack Warner first reported by Sharon Rosen Leib in The Forward.[27] ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt expressed his disappointment, stating "I would’ve hoped that any honest historical assessment of the motion picture industry — its origins, its development, its growth — would include the role that Jews played in building the industry from the ground up". The Forward, Bill Maher and Bari Weiss also raised the issue.[28][29][30]

In January 2022, The Academy Museum announced plans to create a permanent exhibit showcasing Hollywood's Jewish pioneers scheduled to open May 2023.[31][32]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Pogrebin, Robin (June 6, 2021). "Movie Museum Rethinks Exhibitions in Response to a Changing World". The New York Times. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  2. ^ a b "Amid Covid-19 adjustments, Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles delays opening by five months". The Art Newspaper. December 18, 2020. Archived from the original on December 18, 2020. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  3. ^ a b Miranda, Carolina (June 15, 2020). "Citing 'devastating pandemic,' Academy Museum once again delays opening — to April 2021". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on June 15, 2020. Retrieved May 20, 2021.
  4. ^ Rathe, Adam (September 27, 2021). "Inside an Unforgettable Night at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures Opening Gala". Town & Country. Retrieved October 20, 2021.{{cite magazine}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  5. ^ "Academy Museum will roll out a digital red carpet before the Oscars". Los Angeles Times. March 11, 2021. Archived from the original on March 11, 2021. Retrieved May 20, 2021.
  6. ^ "Grand Opening Of Long-Awaited Academy Museum Arrives Thursday". KCAL-TV. September 30, 2021. Retrieved October 20, 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ Robb, David (July 14, 2022). "Academy Museum Of Motion Pictures Voluntarily Recognizes Union To Represent Its Workers". Deadline. Retrieved August 14, 2022.
  8. ^ Rottenberg, Josh (September 27, 2017). "$50 million gift from Cheryl and Haim Saban gives Motion Picture Academy museum a major boost". Los Angeles Times.
  9. ^ "Renzo Piano completes Academy Museum of Motion Pictures". Dezeen. March 10, 2021. Retrieved May 20, 2021.
  10. ^ Kilday, Gregg (November 19, 2013). "Jeffrey Katzenberg, Steven Spielberg Each Donate $10 Million to Academy Museum". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 20, 2021.
  11. ^ "Academy Museum of Motion Pictures offers up The Matrix, Dorothy and Pedro Almodóvar". The Art Newspaper. April 6, 2020. Archived from the original on April 11, 2020. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  12. ^ a b "Academy Museum nears completion and gives a sneak peek inside". Los Angeles Times. February 7, 2020. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  13. ^ Gray, Tim (October 8, 2015). "Shirley Temple Family Gives $5 Million to Academy Museum". Variety. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  14. ^ Bart, Peter (February 8, 2020). "Academy Museum Unveils New Theater As It Nears Fundraising Goal". Deadline. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  15. ^ Rus, Mayer (January 20, 2019). "Architect Renzo Piano Gives An Inside Look at the Forthcoming Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles". Architectural Digest. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  16. ^ Rubin, Rebecca; Rico, Klaritza (May 19, 2020). "Academy Wins Bid for 'Midsommar' May Queen Dress From A24 Charity Auction (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  17. ^ Bahr, Lindsey (November 23, 2020). "Bruce, the last 'Jaws' shark, docks at the Academy Museum". Opelika-Auburn News. Archived from the original on December 2, 2020. Retrieved November 24, 2020 – via Associated Press.
  18. ^ "ACADEMY MUSEUM OF MOTION PICTURES ANNOUNCES ACQUISITION OF BELA LUGOSI'S ICONIC CAPE FROM DRACULA". | Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. October 18, 2019. Retrieved August 17, 2021.
  19. ^ "What You'll Find At The Academy Museum When We Can Go To Museums Again". LAist. April 6, 2020. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  20. ^ Barnes, Brooks (December 4, 2018). "Film Academy Museum, Yet to Open, Reveals Inaugural Exhibitions". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved May 10, 2021.
  21. ^ "Academy Museum". Retrieved October 25, 2022.
  22. ^ "You can now enter Hayao Miyazaki's enchanting animated world at the Academy Museum". Retrieved October 25, 2022.
  23. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (October 8, 2021). "Academy Museum's Inaugural Film Premiere Will Be Focus Features' 'Last Night In Soho'". Deadline Hollywood.
  24. ^ Malkin, Marc (September 30, 2021). "Robert Pattinson, H.E.R. and More at the Academy Museum Premiere Party". Variety.
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^ Rosen Leib, Sharon. "Jews built Hollywood. So why is their history erased from the Academy's new museum?". The Forward.
  28. ^ Siegel, Tatiana (January 14, 2022). "'Where Are the Jews?': Scandal Erupts at the Academy Museum". Rolling Stone. Retrieved January 23, 2022.
  29. ^ "Absence of Jewish legacy at LA's Academy Museum of Motion Pictures spurs outcry". The Times of Israel. Retrieved January 23, 2022.
  30. ^ Haring, Bruce (January 22, 2022). "Bill Maher's 'Real Time' Talks Covid-19, Crime, And A Gay Marriage Between Biden And Obama In His Return From Break". Deadline. Retrieved January 23, 2022.
  31. ^ Rosen Leib, Sharon. "Academy Museum of Motion Pictures course corrects on Jewish founders". The Forward.
  32. ^ Rosen Leib, Sharon (October 14, 2021). "The new Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles neglects Hollywood's Jewish founders". The Forward. Retrieved May 14, 2022.

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