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Never Mind Rolex, how about a popular premiere for the Movie Museum? – Deadline

With the Oscars (thankfully) behind us, it’s time to start worrying about the Academy Museum again. This much postponed institution is now set to open with a golden gala honoring Sophia Loren and Haile Gerima, and sponsored by Rolex, on September 25, with a public opening five days later.

So here’s an idea museum keepers can get for the price of a Wolfgang Puck sushi cone: let the fans in first.

Seriously.

After years of delay, the Film Academy’s museum is actually expected to arrive at a fortuitous moment, just as confinement-weary audiences are once again getting comfortable with theaters. The strong box office performance last weekend points to normalization. Barring a Covid wave, all four quadrants are expected to be back in line by September.

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What better time to celebrate? The movies are back!

And what better way to do that than in a brand new film museum, right in the middle of Los Angeles?

Opened with an indoor-outdoor event, a free popular premiere that is genuinely, to use a current slogan, “inclusive.” No studio walls. No velvet cords. Reverse Hollywood history by inviting people in, not excluding them.

There’s plenty of space on the patches of dirt, grassy mounds, and cement patios that surround the adjoining Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Use it all.

I imagine free food. Not the pricey kind, but interesting snacks, probably served by those high-end caterers who turn movie sets into a mobile feast. Sponsors could help you. The media, always ready to line up for the buffet, will bring a lot of publicity and goodwill.

As for outdoor attractions, the possibilities are endless. Personally, I would prefer more folkloric exhibits that capture the fun, rebellious spirit, and raw exuberance of the movies, which are, after all, folk art.

Have crazy stuff. Find one of these wacky rocket launcher dune buggies from Hal Needham’s Megaforce, the ones producer Al Ruddy described during a Governors Ball tribute as getting him fired from Paramount for blowing things up. Re-inflate stand-up Arnold Schwarzenegger who deflated at a Westwood premiere for Heroes of the last action. Get the stars to sign autographs – hey, baseball players do.

The indoor program could be a bit trickier, given the museum’s apparent trend towards elevation, importance, and global reach. Crowds may or may not be mesmerized by an examination of racial and gender stereotypes or the work of Hayao Miyazaki or stories of women Shattering the Ceiling at the Oscars. But there will be a lot of costumes and creatures to see. And there’s still time to fill the gift shop with Eddie Murphy Mumford shirts with Beverly Hills cop or squint teddy bears talking about Ted.

Everything to turn people on, many of them.

After bringing the fans in, take a day, clean up, and let the exclusive decor do its gala. The public will have already understood the message: in the cinema museum, and in the theaters, they come first.

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