Leonardo DiCaprio is helping turn the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences into the Land of Oz.
The actor and activist recently helped the Academy Foundation acquire a pair of Dorothy’s ruby slippers from “The Wizard of Oz,” it was revealed on Wednesday.
Funding for the slippers came from the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, as well as donations from Steven Spielberg and co-chair of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art Terry Semel.
“The ruby slippers occupy an extraordinary place in the hearts of movie audiences the world over,” Bob Iger, president and CEO of the Walt Disney Co. and chair of the capital campaign for the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, said in a statement. “This is a transformative acquisition for our collection.”
The slippers acquired by the foundation, known as the “Witch’s Shoes” are reportedly in the best condition of the four pairs known to be in existence.
According to a release from the Academy, they pair are suspected to be shoes “Wizard of Oz” star Judy Garland wore when Dorothy clicks her heels to return to Kansas.
A magical piece of Hollywood history, Academy CEO Dawn Hudson said the Foundation was thrilled Leo helped them acquire the shoes.
“Leo’s passionate leadership has helped us bring home this legendary piece of movie history,” Hudson said in a statement. “It’s a wonderful gift to the Academy museum project, and a perfect representation of the work we do year-round to preserve and share our film heritage.”
The shoes are expected to eventually be a part of the upcoming Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, which is in development with LACMA.
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