A distraught reader recently wrote in about the closure of the Big Lots on Vine. That's one of the sites the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have acquired for their big museum, which was originally--way back in time--going to break ground right around now. We found out last fall that that schedule had to be tossed because of (what else?) the economy. An Academy spokesperson today tells us that fundraising hasn't even begun, and it won't start "until we can be successful," but eventually they hope to raise $200-300 million (the Academy will also contribute a significant amount and already has in the form of land acquisition). Meanwhile, she says they're continuing to work with an exhibition design consultant and design architect Christian de Portzamparc.
Portzamparc submitted plans last year, and the spokesperson says while there was "some enthusiasm" for them, the designs were "not at all in line with the realities of our budget." Do'h!
So he's gone back to work, but with no firm timeline, there's not too much urgency for a final design.
And remember the "distinctive" feature Los Angeles magazine told us about? The spokesperson didn't even really remember what that was.
As for the Big Lots and all that other buildings the Academy acquired, there are no plans for demolition. They're managing the properties and keeping them secure for now.
· Oscar Museum Renderings in the Wild; Progress Update [Curbed LA]