Check out this awesome video featuring a remarkable piece of movie memorabilia being placed into The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. “Bruce” the shark, the last surviving model from the iconic movie Jaws, is now at the movie museum that was supposed to open earlier this year but COVID pushes back. The museum is now set for a spring 2021 release.
Here’s the press release from Bill Kramer, Director and President of the Academy Museum about the week-long installation:
“It’s been a long journey for Bruce since he was acquired in 2016, and we couldn’t be happier to welcome him to his new home. We look forward to our opening when museum visitors can engage with our exhibitions, experience our beautiful Renzo Piano-designed building, and come face to face with one of the most iconic characters in film history.”
And some history about the 84’ 3/4”, 1208 lb. shark, and his new location:
The monumental model is the fourth, final, and only surviving version of the shark model derived from the original Jaws mold. The creation of the infamous mechanical shark—which Spielberg is rumored to have named “Bruce” after his lawyer—was tasked to art director Joe Alves, whose original schematics depict the 25-foot long body, 400-pound head, and jaws nearly five feet wide. The three screen-used production molds cast in latex and rubber rotted and were destroyed. The Academy Museum’s version, cast in fiberglass for photo opportunities at Universal Studios Hollywood surrounding the film’s 1975 release, survived at Universal until 1990 when it found its way to Nathan Adlen’s family’s junkyard business in Sun Valley, California. In 2010, it was authenticated by Roy Arbogast, a member of the original Jaws film’s special effects crew, and in 2016, the Academy Museum acquired the shark model through a contribution by Nathan Adlen. The museum worked with special effects and make-up artist Greg Nicotero, co-founder of KNB EFX, to meticulously restore the fiberglass shark which had deteriorated from being outdoors for 25 years.
The conservation is now complete, and the Academy Museum has undertaken the complex task of moving the largest object from its collection on site. Since the shark is so large, it is unable to fit in the museum’s elevators. Instead, a team of art handlers, engineers, and construction workers removed two panels from the Saban Building’s curtain wall of glass and expertly craned Bruce into the building.
Bruce’s dramatic new home is suspended 30 feet above the third floor of the Pritzker Prize-winning architect Renzo Piano-designed Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, where the public can enjoy it once again. In its new location, Bruce will be visible from many vantage points within the museum and to passersby outside on Fairfax Avenue and 6th Street.