The Motion Picture Association (MPA) officially reopened its transformed global headquarters Wednesday night with an Opening Night Celebration in Washington, D.C. – located just steps from the White House and Lafayette Park at 1600 I (Eye) Street NW.
Designed to reflect today’s dynamic entertainment industry, the new space includes a state-of-the-art theater with expanded seating capacity, an elegant event venue with floor-to-ceiling windows, and a museum-style exhibit featuring props, costumes, and memorabilia from iconic films and television shows.
“This is an incredible moment for the Motion Picture Association,” said Motion Picture Association Chairman and CEO Charles Rivkin. “Our new home celebrates our historic past, while allowing us to move forward, innovate, and advocate on behalf of the dynamic film, television, and streaming content industry. From premiere screenings to events with elected officials to community events for local artists and students, this building is where Hollywood and Washington will meet.”
To mark the official building reopening, Mr. Rivkin hosted members of Congress, current and former members of the administration, studio leadership, media and other Washington thought leaders. Former association chairs Senator Chris Dodd and Secretary Dan Glickman, and John Valenti, son of the association’s longtime president, were also in attendance.
Photos from the Opening Night Party are available here. (Photo Credit: Nick Klein/Asico Photo)
PROPS, COSTUMES, AND MEMORABILIA
The MPA’s first floor event space and staff offices on the eighth floor are displaying props, costumes, and memorabilia from iconic films and television shows from each of the association’s member studios: Disney, Netflix, Paramount, Sony, Universal, and Warner Bros. Each piece is housed in museum-quality display cases, and new pieces will be rotated into the space periodically. The exhibit was curated by Liz Hart Events and made possible by the generous contributions of each member studio’s Archives Department.
The items currently featured include:
- Giant (1956): Cowboy boots worn by James Dean as Jett Rink
- Superman (1978): Superman costume worn by Christopher Reeve
- A League of Their Own (1992): Shirley Baker’s Rockford Peach Uniform (#11) worn by Ann Cusack and Life Magazine cover featuring Geena Davis as Dottie Hinson
- Apollo 13 (1995): Miniature Space Capsule used in production
- Batman & Robin (1997): Batman Cowl worn by George Clooney as Batman and The Batblade used by Alicia Silverstone as Batgirl
- Titanic (1997): Heart of the Ocean Necklace used by Kate Winslet, “First Class Entrance” sign, life vest, violin used by Jonathan Evans-Jones, and Note from Rose used by Kate Winslet
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001) and throughout the motion picture series: The Sorting Hat worn by Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and others
- Men in Black
- Men in Black II (2002): De-Atomizer Double Barrel Standard Issue Gun, Neuralyzer, MTA Security ID Badge used by Will Smith as Agent J, and USPS ID used by Tommy Lee Jones as Agent K
- Men in Black III (2012): De-Atomizer Shot Gun used by Tommy Lee Jones as Agent K
- The Cat in the Hat (2003): Animatronic Hat worn by Mike Myers as The Cat
- Elf (2003): Coat worn by Will Ferrell as Buddy The Elf
- Pirates of the Caribbean
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl (2003): Jack Sparrow’s compass used by Johnny Depp
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006): Dead Man’s Chest used by Johnny Depp
- Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007): Jack Sparrow costume worn by Johnny Depp
- National Treasure
- National Treasure (2004): Liberty Bell used by Nicolas Cage
- National Treasure: Book of Secrets (2009): Book of Secrets used by Nicolas Cage
- Night at the Museum
- Night at the Museum (2004): Teddy Roosevelt’s Binoculars used by Robin Williams, Teddy Roosevelt’s Binoculars Case used by Robin Williams, Teddy Roosevelt’s Handkerchief used by Robin Williams, Teddy Roosevelt’s Sword and Sheath used by Robin Williams, Teddy Roosevelt’s Hat worn by Robin Williams, Teddy Roosevelt’s Eyeglasses worn by Robin Williams, and Security Guard Museum Keys used by Ben Stiller
- Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian (2009): Einstein Bobble Head voiced by Eugene Levy and Brandon’s Smithsonian ID Card used by Jonah Hill
- The Office (2005-2013): Dundie Trophy presented to Jim Halpert for “Best Dad” used by John Krasinski (S7:21), Dwight Schrute’s Employee of the Month Plaque used by Rainn Wilson (S4:03), and Michael Scott’s Parking Space Sign used by Steve Carrell
- The Dark Knight Rises (2012): Dark Knight statue revealed in final scenes
- The Lorax (2012): Oversized Promotional Display Sculpture of The Lorax; Character voiced by Danny DeVito
- The Goldbergs (2013 – Current): “Ugly Jacket,” Wig, and Tennis Shoes worn by Wendi McLendon-Covey as Beverly Goldberg (“Hail Barry” – Season 5, Episode 14)
- Star Trek: Into Darkness (2013): Captain James T. Kirk costume worn by Chris Pine and Spock costume worn by Zachary Quinto
- Outlander (2014 – Present): Claire’s Red Dress and Hand Fan worn by Caitriona Balfe
- Fences (2016): Rose Maxson costume worn by Viola Davis (Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress)
- Ghostbusters (2016): Proton pack with wand and PKE Meter used by Melissa McCarthy as Abby Yates
- Hidden Figures (2016): Katherine’s Hero Calculator used by Taraji P. Henson; Paul Stafford’s Badge used by Jim Parsons, Katherine’s NASA Badge with Clearances used by Taraji P. Henson, Dorothy’s NASA Badge with Clearances used by Octavia Spencer, and Mary’s NASA Badge with Clearances used by Janelle Monáe
- Aquaman (2018): Aquaman costume worn by Jason Momoa
- Bird Box (2018): Malorie Hayes’ costume worn by Sandra Bullock and bird box prop used by Sandra Bullock
- Roma (2018): three black-and-white “Lapis Edition” prints signed by Alfonso Cuarón and Carlos Somonte
- Rocketman (2019): Gucci jacket with swarovski crystal embellishments worn by Taron Egerton with inside lapel signed by Elton John and Taron Egerton; Gold Record prop presented to John Reid played by Richard Madden
Additionally, on Wednesday, October 16 and Thursday, October 17, the Batmobile from Batman Forever (1995) was on display outside of the newly renovated building, courtesy of Warner Bros. It was on site during the Opening Night Party, and was accessible to the public on both days. More than 2500 people came to see the car at last count.
Photos of the props, costumes, and memorabilia can be found here. (Photo Credit: Gary Landsman)
STATE-OF-THE-ART THEATER AND EVENT SPACE
The building features a state-of-the-art, expanded theater, which seats up to 118 people (up from 70 in the old theater). It has best-in-class capabilities, including 4K digital cinema projection with Dolby 3D, BluRay, and multimedia projection; Dolby Atmos immersive audio technology powered by 41 speakers and six subwoofers; and a theater stage, among other features.
In addition to the theater, the MPA’s event venue is located on the first floor of the building. It is 10,304 square feet with capacity for 225 people for a reception and 100 for a sit-down dinner. It includes a 14’ x 8’ LED NanoLumens Screen and a 98” display monitor programmed to feature MPA member studio content all day, every day. The space also has a large catering kitchen and bar. It is staffed daily by MPA employees, including a projectionist, an event assistant, and a receptionist.
The second floor of the building is home to the Jack Valenti Room – named after the association’s longtime president (1966-2004). The Valenti room serves as a “green room” and private screening room with seating for eight. It features a 98” display monitor with cable television access, BluRay connections, and a top-of-the-line sound bar.
Photos of the event space and theater can be found here. (Photo Credit: Gary Landsman)
A STORIED PAST
The MPA headquarters is situated on an historic block located within the bounds of Pierre L’Enfant’s 1790 plans for the District of Columbia. The building was constructed on land that was originally part of a larger property owned by prominent Washingtonians Secretary of State Daniel Webster and banker William Wilson Corcoran, as well as Lucius Tuckerman, a New York iron manufacturer and co-founder of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Since moving its headquarters to this address in the 1940’s, the Motion Picture Association has hosted luminaries from the worlds of entertainment and politics, including presidents and first ladies, members of Congress, Supreme Court justices, senior administration officials, diplomats, Oscar-winning actors and filmmakers, studio leadership, and many more members of the Washington community – from local schoolchildren to media influencers.
A NEW SPACE FOR CREATIVITY AND INNOVATION
In July 2017, the Motion Picture Association and Trammell Crow announced plans to redevelop the building, and the two-year renovation began the following month. The transformation of the mid-century modern original building reflects the creativity and innovation of the film, television, and streaming industry. Gensler – led by Jordan Goldstein, principal and global director of design – was the architect of the building’s transformation. CBRE is managing the leasing efforts of available office space.
In addition to the MPA’s event space and theater, the 121,000 square foot building features a rooftop lounge and terrace with views of the White House and the Washington Monument, as well as a top-of-the-line fitness center. It has already been recognized for its sustainability achievements and is a certified LEED Gold building.