George Lucas Museum Plans Approved By LA City Council

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Filmmaker George Lucas' museum paying tribute to the narrative arts cleared a key hurdle, with the Los Angeles City Council unanimously approving the $1.5billion project in Exposition Park.

The groundbreaking for the museum, which will be built at Expostion Park near University of Southern California - Lucas' alma mater - is scheduled to start later this year.

"It is the largest private gift in our city, in our state or in our nation's history", said Councilman Curren D. Price Jr., whose district includes Exposition Park.

Hardly a museum of Star Wars, the new institution will focus will be on "the power of storytelling across all media, including paintings, illustrations, and moving images", and it will display items from Lucas's own collection (he's a big-time Norman Rockwell collector).

And, yes, exhibits will include some classic "Star Wars" stuff.

"Everything from Luke Skywalker's first light sabre to Darth Vader's costume and helmet", said Bacigalupi.

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Popular art, he said, is the glue that holds people together, that teaches them that while we may have differences we have similar aspirations.

In January, Lucas announced that he had selected Los Angeles over his hometown of San Francisco as the home for the museum, which was a coup for L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti and local elected officials.

Inititally, Lucas had planned on breaking ground in Chicago or San Francisco.

"Thank you so much to George Lucas and Mellody Hobson for bringing this vision of inspire generations to come to be creators and to seize their dreams", Garcetti said in the council chambers before the vote.

Hobson said she was heartbroken that they couldn't get the project built in the two other cities.

"And then we said, 'All right, let's clear the boards and find a place that really wants it'".