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HYPEBEAST Explored the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures

The premier destination on the history of filmmaking.

The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures has been in the works for nearly a decade, and it sure was worth the wait. Walking towards the Renzo Piano-designed building, which from a distance looks like a semi-translucent Death Star, gives you a feeling of suspense as if you were to embark on a high-thrill amusement ride.

Of the many sites to see throughout the institution, the three-level “Stories of Cinema” exhibition features an unrivaled collection of written screenplays, costume design, concept art, and film reels that tie in work from the late-19th Century to the present day. Immediately, one of the highlights of the museum wasn’t merely the work on display but the reactions of the crowd — guests both old and new — who stood in awe as if rediscovering film for the first time.

As you approach the second floor, a massive three-panel LED display invites you in through a magical montage of cinematic excellence — from Stanley Kubrick‘s 1968 masterpiece, 2001: A Space Odyssey, to the captivating sequel to the Blade Runner series, which was complemented by the musical score of Hans Zimmer. Further into the gallery and you can find spaces dedicated to legends such as Bruce Lee, a golden room with an up-close look at the storied Oscar trophy, along with a hall replaying some of the most memorable speeches from past winners. Additionally, there is an entire room dedicated to the cultural inspirations of Academy Award-winning director, Spike Lee and in-depth look at the making of The Wizard of Oz.

The third floor pays special emphasis to world-building, by focusing on genres such as sci-fi, fantasy, and animation. Visitors can marvel at seeing original costumes and replicas of fan favorites, such as R2-D2 and C-3PO, Edward Scissor Hands and E.T, to H.R. Giger‘s grotesque Xenomorph head. Each floor almost felt like a maze that you didn’t mind getting lost in, such as the seemingly endless side rooms that featured everything from a pitch-black audio experience, to an immersive circular room that showcases a cinematic montage of space.

The fourth floor presents a new exhibition on legendary Japanese filmmaker, Hayao Miyazaki. As soon as you walk through the doors, you are entrenched in a vibrant portal that transports viewers to their favorite Studio Ghibli films. The exhibition features 300 artworks that span concept sketches and animation cels, along with film reels and installations, such as a glowing tree and a halo sculpture that invites people to lay on the ground to witness the animated sky above.

To round out the museum, the institution has two in-house theatres, a cafe, a restaurant, and a gift shop with an assortment of curated goods, such as the latest monograph on Miyazaki. Additionally, there is a breathtaking view that can be accessed on the top floor overlooking all of Los Angeles.

Movie lover or not, the Academy Museum is one of the most exciting museums that LA has to offer and one that will remind you of the magic behind filmmaking. The institution is currently experiencing an influx of visitors, so ensure your trip by reserving a ticket online.

Elsewhere in art, the Boca Raton Museum of Art will showcase an exhibition on Machu Picchu.

Academy Museum of Motion Pictures
6067 Wilshire Blvd,
Los Angeles, CA 90036

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