Tag Archives: Alicia Silverstone

The Witch’s House

One of my favorite sites to stalk in all of Beverly Hills is known simply as “The Witch’s House” and it just so happens to fit in perfectly with this month’s Halloween theme.  Although not really a filming location, the house is a Beverly Hills landmark of sorts.  Known formally as “The Spadena House”, after the Spadena family who lived there in the 1930s, the house did show up very briefly in fave movie Clueless, during the scene when Alicia Silverstone is “totally buggin'” about Ty’s crush on Josh (pictured in above screen capture). 

The home was originally built on a silent film studio lot in Culver City known as Irvin C. Willat Productions and was used as an office/dressing room.  It was designed by the very first art direction Oscar Winner, Henry C. Oliver, in 1921.  Willat Productions was sold in 1926 and the house was purchased and later moved to its current location in the heart of Beverly Hills, where it was turned into a private home for the Spadena family.  No one can say for sure how the house came to be called “The Witch’s House”, but mention the words to any Beverly Hills native and they will know exactly what you are talking about.  Personally, I believe the house got its nickname due to its resemblance to the witch’s home in the fairy tale “Hansel and Gretel”.

In 1998, a real estate agent named Michael Libow was hired to sell the house.  Apparently he became frustrated that all prospective buyers planned to demolish the property, so he took matters into his own hands and purchased the home himself for $1.3 million.  He is currently restoring the property to its original state, along with the help of art director Nelson Coates.  For the past few years the two have painstakingly rennovated the home, even re-creating the original moat which once surrounded the property.  The Witch’s House is still currently under rennovation, so unfortunately a large chain link construction fence blocks some of the view from the street.  But hopefully in a few years the rennovations will be complete and the house will be even more spectacular for us stalkers to view. 

Because it is so truly unique, I am actually very surprised that the house hasn’t appeared in more Hollywood productions.  Besides Clueless, the Witch’s House was also featured in the 1965 movie The Loved One, as the home of Sir John Gielgud’s character, and in the 1957 horror film The Undead.   Supposedly, during its time on the Willat lot, the home also appeared in a quite a few 1920s silent films, as well.

The Witch’s House is simply a must see for all Beverly Hills tourists, especially during the Halloween season, and it is a beautiful example of Storybook style architecture. 

You can read more about the history of the Witch’s House and see some fabulous photos of it here.

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  🙂

Stalk It: The Witch’s House is located at 516 N. Waldren Drive, at the corner of Walden Drive and Carmelita Avenue, in Beverly Hills.

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“Isn’t My House Classic? The Columns Date All the Way Back To 1972!”

For a few years now I have been looking for Cher’s house from one of my fave movies of all time, Clueless.  In trying to locate the house, though, I had read several articles and interviews about the filming of Clueless, which all stated that the neighborhood scenes were actually filmed in Scottsdale, Arizona, not in California, so I had pretty much called off my hunt.  I had also always believed that Cher’s house was merely a set, not a real home.  Something about the house just looked fake to me, so I had a feeling the house was just a facade that was built at a movie studio strictly for the filming of Clueless

 

But all of that changed last week, when I got a challenge from a guy named John who informed me that Cher’s house was actually also used as Gaby’s boyfriend Victor Lang’s house in a Season 3 episode of Desperate Housewives  entitled “Dress Big” (pictured above). After hearing that, I knew that the house could not be located in Scottsdale.  And, being that the Desperate Housewives  episode aired twelve years after Clueless was filmed, I also knew the house had to be real, not just a set.  So I enlisted Mike, over at MovieShotsLA, to help me locate the house and, sure enough, after just a few days we found it!!

After reading a few articles on the filming of Clueless  and searching through online images of colonial style mansions in the LA area, I decided to check my fave locations website, Malibu Locations, to see if Cher’s home was listed with them.  Sure enough, after about ten seconds of searching, I found it!  Mailbu Locations listed the home as being in Encino, so I got Mike on the phone and the two of us got to searching aerial views of Encino.  About ten minutes later I located the house, right on Louise Avenue in the heart of Encino.  OMG – If Cher only knew that her home was actually located in the “Valley”!  LOL   So, of course, yesterday I ran right out to do some Clueless  stalking!  🙂 

I am sad to say that not much of the home is visible from the street, which I pretty knew before I stalked it, as I remembered from the movie that the house had an extremely long driveway.  But Zillow has some good aerial views of the home and you can definitely recognize it as Cher’s mansion.  This is one location I wouldn’t really recommend stalking as there just isn’t really anything to see.  😦 

 But I was absolutely floored to discover from looking at the Malibu Locations photos of the house  that the interior of the home was also used extensively for the filming of Clueless!!   If you look at the interior photos of the home, all Clueless fans will recognize the entryway staircase which was shown several times in the movie, most memorably as the location where Cher and Josh first kiss.

Also used in the movie were the Encino house’s real life kitchen, wood-paneled office, dining room, fireplace (where Ty tries to burn her “Rollin’ With The Homies” tape), master bedroom (where Cher and Christian was Spartacus  and Some Like It Hot), and backyard and pool area (where Mr. Hall and Miss Geist get married).  I must admit I was absolutely floored to see the pics of the interior of the house.  🙂

Mike also just discovered that the interiors of the Clueless  home were also used as Toni Marchette’s house on 90210.  For the exterior, however, a different home was used.

Until next time, Happy Stalking! 🙂

Stalk It: The Clueless  house is located at 5148 Louise Avenue in Encino – yes, that’s the “Valley”!  🙂  While there is not much of the house to see from the street, you can cyber-stalk it on Zillow here.

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As If!

Circus Liquors - CluelessLast weekend, while doing some stalking in the Valley, I about had a heart attack when we drove by a small liquor store in North Hollywood because I immediately recognized it as the liquor store where Alicia Silverstone gets robbed in one of my fave movies of all time – Clueless.  I made my boyfriend swerve through several lanes of traffic to pull into the liquor store parking lot where I promtly ran inside to ask the cashier if Clueless  was filmed there.  He told me that indeed it was!

In the movie, Cher’s friend Elton ditches her in the parking lot of the liquor store and she is immediately robbed at gunpoint for her purse and cell phone.  After she is forced to lay down in her Alaia dress, the thief takes off and Cher uses a payphone to call her stepbrother Josh to come rescue her.  Sadly, the payphone Cher uses was torn down long ago.    😦   But the exterior of the liquor store looks almost exactly as it did during the filming of Clueless  and the large neon clown sign is still standing at the entrance to the parking lot.

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  🙂

Stalk It: Circus Liquors is located at 5600 Vineland Avenue in North Hollywood.  Similar to how it was portrayed in Clueless, the liquor store is not in the greatest of neighborhoods, so exercise caution.  It is perfectly safe to visit the store in the daytime, but I wouldn’t recommend stalking it at night.

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