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The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures is a museum dedicated to all things film, particularly the industry's history. The Academy Museum is one of LA’s newest and most-anticipated additions. I will admit I was surprised it took nearly 100 years of the Academy’s existence for a museum to be created, but now that it’s here, LA locals and tourists alike may find themselves wondering if this museum is worth their time and money.
I recently visited the Academy Museum in Los Angeles for the first time. In this review, I’ll give my honest thoughts about the museum, what it has to offer, and what to know when planning your visit.
Are Los Angeles museums open?
Yes, Los Angeles museums are open. The covid pandemic caused many tourist spots to close or enforce strict mask and/or vaccine requirements. The Academy Museum opened in September 2021. During my February 2022 visit, guests were required to show proof of vaccination, ID, and wear their masks while inside. California has recently relaxed its mask requirements, with Los Angeles County following suit soon after. However, masks and vaccination proof will likely still be required for a while.
My best advice if you plan to visit the Academy Museum in Los Angeles is to bring your vaccine card, ID, and prepare to wear a mask inside. If you don’t plan for this and the museum requires these items, you could be out of luck and miss out on seeing the exhibits.
What’s in the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures collection?
The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures collection features some impressive exhibits, including Oscar statues and ceremony dresses, a Spike Lee tribute, costumes and characters from movies, film scripts, animation drawings, a Wizard of Oz section, and more.
The Oscars section includes statues won by Clark Gable, Sidney Poitier, and more. They also feature some famous dresses worn by the likes of Cher and Rita Moreno.
The tribute to Spike Lee focuses on the iconic director’s achievements, as well as his impressive poster collection. Spike has movie posters signed by many of the directors themselves. For example, he’s got a Jurassic Park poster signed by Steven Spielberg himself.
The costumes from famous films include a dress worn by Marilyn Monroe, Emma Stone’s yellow dress from LA LA Land, Russel Crowe’s Gladiator ensemble, and Brad Pitt’s wardrobe from Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. I’m always amazed at how small actors seem when you see the clothes they wear in-person. In addition, there’s an exhibit dedicated to characters from Sci-Fi movies. Among the characters are E.T., C-3PO, and R2-D2, just to name a few.
Early film scripts and animation drawings are among the famous movie memorabilia. Perhaps most impressive, though, is the museum’s Wizard of Oz exhibit. Movie fans can see up close and in-person Dorothy’s ruby slippers, blue dress, the Wicked Witch’s hat, and lots more.
What is the Oscars Experience at the Academy Museum?
The Oscars Experience at the Academy Museum is an immersive exhibit in which you can experience what it’s like to accept an Oscar. Participants will get to hear their named called and accept their award, with a video recording included. The Oscars Experience is an extra fee, though, in addition to the general admission ticket.
My fiancé and I did not do the Oscars Experience. However, if this museum is at the top of your Los Angeles bucket list, I would say spending the extra money might be worth it. After all, when else can you get this opportunity aside from actually winning an Academy Award?
Is the Academy Museum worth visiting?
Yes, I think the Academy Museum is worth visiting. They have an impressive collection of some of the most famous Hollywood memorabilia of all time, right in the heart of where movies are made. If you love the movies - especially the history of film - I think this museum deserves a visit.
How much is the Academy Museum?
The prices for Academy Museum tickets are listed below.
Seniors Age 62 and older: $19
College Students: $15
Kids 17 and younger: Free
Museum members: Free
How much does the Oscars Experience cost?
The Oscars Experience is an additional $15. You must purchase a general admission ticket as well.
How long does it take to visit the Academy Museum?
You only need a half-day at most to visit the Academy Museum. We spent a total of about two hours there, but I think if you do the Oscars Experience, you may spend closer to three hours.
Academy Museum Parking
The Academy Museum is adjacent to the LACMA building. While there is parking available at the LACMA garage, prices can be expensive. My best advice would be to try and find a meter, open street parking, or take public transportation if you want to save money.
Academy Museum Hours
Sunday: 10am - 6pm
Monday: 10am - 6pm
Tuesday: 10am - 6pm
Wednesday: 10am - 6pm
Thursday: 10am - 6pm
Friday: 10am - 8pm
Saturday: 10am - 8pm
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About the author
Jill Zwarensteyn is a writer and comedian who has been featured on Amazon, truTV, The New York Times, Matador Network, BUST Magazine, Sleep Advisor, Tiplr, ARTRPRNR Magazine, YourTango, Thought Catalog, GoMad Nomad, Mashable, The Daily Mail UK, the Cannes Film Festival, LaughFest, Women's Lifestyle Magazine, and the Funny Women Festival LA. For more info visit: http://www.jillzwarensteyn.weebly.com