Do you remember that museum that George Lucas has wanted to make, but got turned down by organizations in San Francisco and Chicago? It finally found a place to call home in the City of Angels.
After 3 years and multiple attempts at trying to negotiate with various city and city planning groups in the United States, it was announced today that Los Angeles would be home to the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art. It will be built in Exposition Park, just steps away from the LA Coliseum and USC, Lucas’ alma mater.
“It feels like this incredible gift has come home. I always thought Los Angeles was the natural place to spread the vision of George Lucas and Mellody Hobson, to make art and creativity accessible and inspirational to the next generation,” said LA Mayor Eric Garcetti after the announcement. “It’s a natural place to have this museum in the creative capital of the world and in the geographic center of the city. It’s a banner day for L.A.”
The museum project became quite controversial because of the discussion regarding where it would be built. Originally, the museum was set to be built in San Francisco’s Presidio district just steps away from Lucasfilm’s headquarters, but the land’s leadership didn’t approve. Lucas then tried to move his museum to Chicago, but an environmental group from Chicago denied Lucas’ requested site as well.
It would appear as if Los Angeles was the only city willing to work with Lucas on a location. It was the “Star Wars” creator’s only request even as he was willing to pay for the entire construction and associated operation costs as well. Once completed, the 275,000 square-foot space will house Lucas’ own art that includes Norman Rockwell paintings and movie memorabilia like the original Darth Vader mask.
Museum officials haven’t announced the opening date yet, but construction is slated to begin sometime this year.