The Academy Museum of Motion Picture's museum honors Hollywoods past and future

HOLLYWOOD, California -- Spring came early to Hollywood this year, just in time for an early Oscar show. That means the pace of preparations had to be quicker, and the red carpet had to be ready that much sooner.

On Sunday the stars walked a gauntlet as long as a city block.

Just upstairs in the Ray Dolby Ballroom, the Oscar nominees gathered on January 27 for lunch. Many are members of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which is divided into branches by the jobs they do. The Actors Branch is the largest.

Laura Dern is a second-generation member, the daughter of Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd.

"The history of the Academy and its archives have been a great love of mine as someone who was raised by parents who were a big part of the Actors Branch," she said.

Dern is favored to win her first Oscar this year for her supporting role as a divorce attorney in "Marriage Story," but she's also on the Academy's Board of Governors and points to an exciting new project as evidence of the organizations' vitality.

"There's an amazing museum that the Academy will be opening next year that will hold many of the stories and the history of cinema, and I think that's going to be incredible," she said.

The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles' Miracle Mile District is being run by Bill Kramer, most recently VP of Development at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, who is returning to a project he helped start. Kramer helped raise the initial funds for The Academy Museum expected to cost $388 million.

It has been decades in the making, a gleam in the eye of Hollywood now being realized.

Here is the whole history of the movies in an historic building that once housed a department store, and connected to it is a sphere containing a state-of-the-art movie theater. On top of that is a terrace with a striking view of the famed Hollywood Sign.

The Academy Museum is designed to appeal to fans and casual moviegoers and everyone in between: the same big crowd that will be watching the Oscar Show on Sunday night.

The museum will open to the public later this year on Monday, Dec. 14.
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