Five Famous Movie Homes

Cinema

Many homes are made famous by the individuals that own them, but let's take a closer look at several unique properties already recognized by thousands of people because of their cameo roles in well-known films and television shows. Some of these A-list locations are prolific, making appearances in several popular movies and TV shows over the last few decades. Other homes go the "Daniel Day-Lewis route" and only appear in one or two projects, but they’re absolutely integral to the plot, setting, and production design.

It’s time to ditch those glitzy maps to the stars and join us for a tour of the homes that remind LA residents that the spirit of Tinseltown is alive, well, and flowing throughout the city.

 

The Sheats-Goldstein House

You may recall the Sheats-Goldstein House from its appearances in recent films like Charlie’s Angels 2: Full Throttle and The Big Lebowski, where, yes, the rug really did tie everything together; but interior design is far from the standout feature in this glass and concrete residence built into the side of a canyon. Located in Beverly Crest, the Sheats-Goldstein House offers a panoramic view of the Pacific Ocean, FOX Studios, and downtown LA. It’s no surprise the owner, James Goldstein, has entertained a full slate of household names, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Mick Jagger, Jay-Z and Rihanna.

Though the Sheats-Goldstein House can be seen in relatively older films, its popularity has soared recently. NPR profiled the property for a story last year, and the home was recently donated to the LA County Museum of Art.

 

2900-2912 ½ Griffith Park Boulevard

We’re cheating a little bit here, since this isn’t one property—but twelve separate cottages. However, the intriguingly strange history of these residences simply can’t be ignored. How many homes can you think of that are so uniquely designed that they can serve as inspiration for Disney animators and David Lynch?

The Griffith Park cottages in the Los Feliz neighborhood were once located around the corner from Disney’s animation studios in the 1930s. Back then, the homes featured gnarled, jagged wood ceilings that inspired the artistic design of the dwarf cottages in the 1937 release of Snow White. Metal roofing contractors weren’t as prominent back then, and it’s a shame because one of the cottages burned down in the winter of 1978 because of its reliance on wood shingles. The properties have rebounded in a big way since then, having served as the Sierra Bonita apartment complex in 2001’s Mulholland Drive—one of the most bizarre and unsettling films…since the bizarre and unsettling David Lynch film that preceded it. If you’re an eclectic film buff, the Griffith Park cottages should be at the top of your LA itinerary.
 

Spadena House (a.k.a. “The Witch’s House”)

Not the moniker you’d expect for a residence once used to shoot Clueless, but this home’s history is the essence of Hollywood. Originally built in 1921, the property served as office and dressing room space for a nearby movie studio in Culver City. The Spadena House was designed by Harry Oliver, an art director that worked on 30 films from 1919-1938. Later, the home was relocated to its current Beverly Hills location.

The 3,500-square-foot estate has been described by architects as the Hansel and Gretel house because of its storybook-like features, including pointed, steep-sloping roofs and a surrounding pond that resembles a moat. Its current namesake comes from the family that first inhabited it: the Spadenas.
 

Ennis House

Are you a sci-fi/horror fan? Familiar with Blade Runner, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and House on Haunted Hill? If so, Ennis House is right up your alley. If not, you may want to rethink the first question. On paper, Ennis House only amounted to one of the 1,000 constructions completed by famed American architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, but this residence, by far, has the most unique design of the other homes profiled.

Located in Los Feliz, Ennis House is hard to miss because of its eye-grabbing Mayan Revival architecture. The property is built with tens-of-thousands of etched, concrete blocks. Some note that the block etchings resemble the letter G and hypothesize that this could be a reference to the Masonic Order that Wright affiliated with. All secretive religious order intrigue aside, Ennis House is undeniably beautiful on the surface. Today, the property is appraised at $3.8 million—a far cry from the $300,000 needed to build it in 1924.
 

Alfred F. Rosenheim Mansion (a.k.a. “Murder House”)

Luckily, the Rosenheim Mansion wasn’t given its name for the reasons you’re thinking. In fact, this residence, originally built in 1902, served as the fictional “Murder House” in the popular TV series, American Horror Story. There are so many astounding things about this home’s history that it’s difficult to pinpoint a favorite factoid. For example, what’s more fascinating? The fact that the Rosenheim Mansion is known as Murder House and once served as a set for the show, Dexter, or the fact that it’s currently listed as an Airbnb rental?

The history of 1120 Westchester Place is vast, contradictory, and ensnaring, so even though it’s a cardinal sin in every horror movie, you should run to the Murder House—not away.
 

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