The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has announced that director Brett Ratner is donating $1 million to the Academy Museum. Ratner is no stranger to the Academy. You’ll recall that he stepped down as Oscar producer two years ago after outcries over an anti-gay slur he uttered while promoting his film Tower Heist for Universal. Host Eddie Murphy soon followed Ratner’s exit. Here’s the Academy’s release:
“Brett has a sincere love of movies and film history, and we are excited to welcome him to our group of supporters,” said Bill Kramer, the museum’s managing director of development.
The Academy launched the Museum’s capital campaign in 2012 and has already secured more than half of the campaign’s $300 million goal in commitments. The campaign is chaired by Bob Iger and co-chaired by Annette Bening and Tom Hanks.
“Thanks to the generosity of founding supporters like Brett, we are now able to realize the long-held dream of the Academy and that of the global film community to build a museum dedicated to the history and future of the movies,” said Iger.
“I feel blessed to be part of such a magnificent museum. I was blown away by the recent Kubrick exhibit at LACMA, which the Academy co-sponsored. I couldn’t be more excited that our Academy will finally have its own museum that will preserve and exhibit cinema’s greatest work,” said Ratner.
Designed by architects Renzo Piano and Zoltan Pali, the Academy Museum will be located next to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in the historic Wilshire May Company building. Slated to open in early 2017, the Academy Museum will contain nearly 300,000 square feet of state-of-the-art galleries, exhibition spaces, theaters, screening rooms, education centers, and special event spaces.
The design for the Academy Museum fully restores the Wilshire and Fairfax street-front facades of the original 1939 Streamline Moderne building. It also includes a spherical wing at the northern end of the original building that will replace an extension made to the structure in 1946. Designed to represent the marriage of art and technology, the wing will house The David Geffen Theater and will be a spectacular new piece of contemporary architecture that will perfectly complement the historic building.
For more information about the museum, please visit http://www.oscars.org/museum