Academy Announces Three $5 Million Gifts for New Museum

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Gale Anne Hurd

Producer Gale Anne Hurd, philanthopist Gerald Schwartz and his wife, and the family of exhibitor Ted Mann are the latest to donate.

Producer Gale Anne Hurd, philanthropist Gerald Schwartz and his wife, Heather Reisman, and the family of exhibitor Ted Mann have contributed $5 million each to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' new museum.

The gifts, which bring with them naming rights, are the latest contributions to the $300 million capital campaign to transform the old May Company building at the corner of Wilshire Blvd. and Fairfax Ave. into the 300,000-square-foot Academy Museum scheduled to open in 2017. Architects Renzo Piano and Zoltan Pali are designing the new museum.

The gift from Hurd, a member of the Academy's board of governors, will fund the museum's Demonstration Stage, which will be called The Hurd Stage. The Hurd Stage will host Academy members and other industry professionals who will conduct clinics and master classes tied to the art and science of moviemaking. It also will allow the museum to highlight the latest technological advancements in cinema and to provide an immersive introductory experience for visitors.

The support from Schwartz, the CEO of private equity firm Onex, and Reisman will fund the museum’s mezzanine lobby and gallery space, which will be called the Gerry Schwartz and Heather Reisman Mezzanine Gallery. Adjacent to the museum's premier theater, this space will serve as a gallery, reception area, and meeting place for visitors and moviegoers. 

Mann's family -- his daughter Victoria Mann Simms, her husband, Ron Simms, and their family contributing through The Simms/Mann Family Foundation -- will support the creation of an intimate theater on the third floor of the museum to be named The Ted Mann Theater. it will be a home for retrospectives, screening series, and special programming, and will be embedded within a permanent exhibition devoted to the history of the Academy and the Oscars. 

“Our plans for the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures are ambitious, and the support of a diverse and committed group of partners will help to make our vision possible,” noted Academy Museum campaign chair Bob Iger. “We are incredibly grateful for these vital commitments to the project.” The Academy launched the 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.