When the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures opens next year on the Miracle Mile, its inaugural long-term exhibition will explore the evolution of film, from its origins to its possible future, museum officials announced Tuesday.
Tentatively titled “Where Dreams Are Made: A Journey Inside the Movies,” the exhibition will occupy two floors of the museum, which is scheduled to open late next year in the former May Company building on Wilshire Boulevard and Fairfax Avenue.
The first temporary exhibition, meanwhile, will be the first U.S. exhibition of the work of Japanese animator, filmmaker and artist Hayao Miyazaki. That exhibition will be followed by one focusing on black filmmakers and their role in the development of American cinema, while also exploring black representation in the film industry from its inception to the period just beyond the Civil Rights era.
“We want the Academy Museum to add to the public’s understanding of the evolution of the art and science of filmmaking around the world — to increase appreciation for this great art form and encourage people to examine the role of movies in society,” Museum Director Kerry Brougher said in a statement. “At the same time, we want to bring to life the most important reason of all for caring about the movies — because they’re magic.”
The main exhibit, “Where Dreams Are Made,” is expected to cover 30,000 square feet of space, will walk visitors through galleries highlighting the evolution of films. It will begin with an exhibition on the making of “The Wizard of Oz,” highlighted by a pair of Dorothy’s ruby red slippers.
Ensuing galleries in the exhibit will highlight the early days of filmmaking in the 19th Century, then providing glimpses of some of the earliest films ever projected and the “trick” and fantasy films of pioneers such as Georges Melies and Louis and Auguste Lumiere. Visitors will then move through galleries focused on camera and editing techniques that enhanced movie-making, then on the heyday of silent films and the classic era of films — featuring displays including a backdrop from “Singin’ in the Rain” and the doors to Rick’s Cafe Americain from “Casablanca” and tributes to screen luminaries such as Marilyn Monroe, Humphrey Bogart, Fred Astaire and Rita Moreno.
The museum will also feature exhibits on the history of the Academy Awards, and a gallery offering visitors their own photo opportunity and “Oscar moment.”
In addition to exhibition galleries, the museum will also feature two theaters, an education studio, event spaces, cafe and store, officials said.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is in the midst of a $388 million fundraising effort for the museum, headed by Disney CEO Bob Iger and actors Annette Bening and Tom Hanks.