Located along the famous ‘Miracle Mile,’ the museum preserves and breathes new life into a 1938 building, the May Company Department Store. The additions dating from 1946 onward have been removed and replaced with a ‘bubble’ containing a theater and a terrace with views of Hollywood. The renovated department store contains over 4,600 square meters of exhibition galleries, and together with two theaters – the David Geffen, seating 1,000, and the Ted Mann, 288 – acts as a ‘lens’ through which to reveal the rich interdisciplinary history of film. Visitors can go up an open circulation ‘spine,’ walk through dynamic, interactive spaces in one of LA’s most iconic historic buildings, and finally come to an ethereal terrace of the bubble and feel afloat over the city. The result is a rewarding dialogue between the gravitas of the old building and the levitas of the new one, between shadow and light.
The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures is scheduled to officially open on 30 September 2021.