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Academy Movie Museum Will Attach Great Glass Sphere to Old May Company Building

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Holy sweet damn, we are finally seeing plans for an Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, and they are a little wild. It took a change of venue and a change of architects to get here--starting in 2005, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences planned to build an all-new space, designed by French starchitect Christian de Portzamparc, at Vine and Homewood (those designs were never made public). The economic downturn changed all that and suddenly last year the Academy announced it would move its museum into LACMA's more or less empty old May Company building at Wilshire and Fairfax; later, it revealed that the space would be designed by Renzo Piano and Zoltan Pali.

So now the Academy has reached its initial fundraising goal of $100 million (they want $250 million overall) and has rewarded us all with design plans: "The design fully restores the Wilshire and Fairfax street-front facades of the 1938 Streamline Moderne building, and includes a spherical glass addition at the back of the original building ... the addition will house a state-of-the-art theater which replaces an extension made to the structure in 1946." The sphere will face "Levitated Mass," aka LACMA's giant rock. The museum will also have "immersive exhibitions and galleries, special screening rooms, and an interactive education center with demonstration labs." Sadly, there will apparently be no giant Oscar man on the building's gold tube. The museum is expected to open in 2016.

· Academy Museum Archives [Curbed LA]

May Company Building

6067 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA

Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

8949 Wilshire Boulevard, Beverly Hills, CA 90211 Visit Website