Twin titans of film, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Steven Spielberg, have each donated $10 million for the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. The generous gift was announced by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in a recent press release. Earlier in the year, their partner David Geffen donated $25 million to the museum planned by the folks who hand out the little golden statuettes. The museum is scheduled to open in 2017 next to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
In recognition of these gifts, the two main galleries on the lobby floor of the Academy Museum will be named for Katzenberg and Spielberg – The Marilyn and Jeffrey Katzenberg Gallery and The Spielberg Family Gallery.
“Steven and Jeffrey share a passion for moviemaking and philanthropy,” noted Academy Museum Campaign Chair Bob Iger in the press release. “With these incredibly generous gifts, they are combining the two, moving us closer to our goal of building a museum to preserve the history of motion pictures and inspire the next generation of filmmakers.”
The Academy launched the Museum’s $300 million capital campaign in 2012 and has already secured more than half of the campaign’s goal in commitments. The campaign is co-chaired by Annette Bening and Tom Hanks. “I am so pleased to join with Jeffrey to help build this museum to celebrate, educate, and preserve the arts and sciences of motion pictures,” said Spielberg. “Having our family name on the lobby floor is a deeply personal way to say how much motion pictures and the Academy have meant to all our lives.”
“Both Steven and I recognize that film’s global impact deserves a museum that reflects its unequaled heritage and serves as a beacon for the future of what we love,” added Katzenberg. “Marilyn and I appreciate this opportunity to be part of such a significant project.”
Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs commented, “Steven and Jeffrey have elevated the art of filmmaking to new heights and have created some of the most beloved films of all time. They continue to be champions of our industry. Having them join us as we build the Academy Museum is an incredible honor. We are so grateful for their support and partnership.”
The lobby of the Academy Museum will be a lively open space that will invite the public to engage in the life of the Museum. The Marilyn and Jeffrey Katzenberg Gallery and The Spielberg Family Gallery will be the only gallery spaces on the lobby level and will showcase exhibitions that will explore the past, present, and future of moviemaking.
“We are building the world’s premier movie museum, and I cannot imagine doing this without the support of two of our industry’s most inspiring leaders,” said Academy CEO Dawn Hudson. “Their gifts will create the first galleries our visitors experience when entering the Museum.”
Designed by architects Renzo Piano and Zoltan Pali, the Academy Museum will be located next to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) 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.