The tales of Jon Snow, Queen Cersei and the rest long ago faded from television screens, but “Game of Thrones” creator David Benioff is still carving out his new Los Angeles fiefdom. Turns out Benioff, 51, was the mystery buyer who forked over nearly $22 million for the bucolic Brentwood estate of Rupert Murdoch’s son Lachlan.
Grant deeds show this deal was actually inked a veritable ice age ago — way back in September 2020, but flew under the radar and was never reported, as it closed off-market. The house was also never publicly listed for sale, though tax records and years-old listings show the property consists of a 1930s ranch house originally designed by acclaimed architect Cliff May, and a small guest cottage that together span about 6,000 square feet.
The 2.3-acre estate is a true ranch, or about as close to a true ranch as you’ll find in the city of Los Angeles. Tucked away in equestrian-oriented Mandeville Canyon, at the very end of a hidden cul-de-sac, the gated property features rolling lawns, many native oak and sycamore trees, several vegetable gardens and even a small vineyard. There’s also a large swimming pool set into a clearing, plus panoramic mountain and canyon views.
Murdoch appears to have reaped a big profit on this house, as he acquired it back in 2013 for “just” $12.5 million, although it’s not clear what renovations and improvements were made over his seven years of ownership. In any case, the Fox CEO and his wife Sarah Murdoch have considerably upsized their residential circumstances — back in 2020, they paid exactly $150 million for a gigantic Bel Air estate known as Chartwell, the longtime residence of Univision chairman Jerry Perenchio.
As for Benioff, he was born into wealthy New York City life as the son of ex-Goldman Sachs chief Stephen Friedman. (He’s also a cousin of tech mogul Marc Benioff, the billionaire founder of Salesforce.) After beginning his professional writing career using the female pen name Jacqueline Benioff, he’s best known for co-creating HBO’s “Game of Thrones” with fellow writer D.B. Weiss, though Benioff has also written the screenplays for blockbuster films (“Troy,” “X-Men Origins: Wolverine”). In 2019, he and Weiss inked a landmark $200 million Nexflix deal.