BUYER: Gary Oldman
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
SIZE: 3,168 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms (total)
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Last August (2011) Brit actor Gary Oldman quietly sold his gated residence tucked into a hairpin curve in the hills above Studio City, CA. Property records (and other online resources) show the 2012 Oscar nominee sold the 3 bedroom and 3.5 bathroom French Country traditional for $1,645,500, just a sliver shy of fifty grand less than the $1,695,000 he paid for the approximately 2,400 square foot single story residence not quite three years earlier.
We’ve recently learned from The Bizzy Boys at Celebrity Address Aerial that about a month after Mister Oldman and his much younger fourth missus—British jazz and electronica singer Alexandra Edenborough (a.k.a. Alex Eden)—sold their May-December love nest and acquired, through the same trust as owned their previous home in Studio City, a bigger and better spread over in the star-stocked Los Feliz area of Los Angeles that cost, as per property records, $2,869,000.
Mister Oldman, nominated for an Academy Award this year for his star turn in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy—a film adaptation of John le Carré’s spy novel of the same (but differently punctuated) name—is an actor’s actor of the highest order. Mister Oldman is oft cited as a much admired actor by other film and television actors, both those who possess actual acting chops as well as those who do not but succeed anyways because they’re just so damned good looking. Yes, hunties. We said it. And each and every one of y’all know exactly the sort of Tinseltown fellas we’re talkin’ about.
Anyhoo, a thespian’s life in the theatre turned into a movie star’s (semi) wild ride in the mid-1980s when Mister Oldman appeared on celluloid to great critical acclaim as Sid in Sid and Nancy (1986) and gay playwright Joe Orton in Prick Up Your Ears (1987). A slew of roles in fine films followed (JFK, Dracula, Léon, The Fifth Element). In more recent years Mister Oldman has found himself in recurring (and undoubtedly very lucrative) roles in the supernaturally successful Batman and Harry Potter film franchises. He has at least a half dozen additional projects either in the hopper or in pre-production according to his resume on the Internet Movie Data Base. They include Guns, Girls and Gambling with Christian Slater and Wettest County with fellow 2012 Academy Award nominee Jessica Chastain who earned her place on the Oscar red carpet this year as a troubled but sweet and racially compassionate Marilyn Monroe-esque bimbette in The Help.
The property does not appear to have been listed on the open market at the time Mister and Fourth Missus Oldman snatched it up last year but with the help of Our Fairy Godmother in Los Feliz Your Mama managed to turn up listing information and photographs from 2010 when the walled, gated and stately (if not particularly large) abode was put up for lease at a rate of $10,000 per month.
The house, a boxy, two-story Southern Plantation-inspired Colonial completely sheathed in fastidiously clipped vines, was built in 1922 according to listing information, sits on a double-wide lot that spans nearly half an acre, and measures in at a relatively modest 3,168 square feet with 3 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms. An additional bedroom and bathroom atop the detached two car garage works well as a guest house, home office space, music studio, live-in domestic quarters or almost off-site housing for a moody teenager.
A basket weave patterned brick walkway lined with low boxwood hedges forms a doughnut shape as it wraps around a two-tiered fountain and approaches the front door set into a shallow, arched portico. We don’t know a pigeon from a vitamin, of course, so we can’t say if anything has been altered but in 2010 the center hall foyer had random-width wood floors stained a dark espresso color, heavy-duty white moldings, and a tray ceiling that shimmered with some sort of metallic leafing that injects the otherwise architecturally and decoratively homey (and even humble) space with a wee tetch of glitz and glam.
The dark wood floors continue into a wonderfully ample living room that stretches the full depth of the house from front to back and features a wood-burning fireplace flanked by built-in bookshelves with a unique (and maybe decoratively over-played) honeycomb detail. The room has a series of French doors on two walls that reach almost all the way to the ceiling and and the butt-end a deep bay window that overlooks the backyard and swimming pool.
An old-timey and perfectly charming swinging door separates the kitchen from the formal dining room, all done up in 2010 listing photos with a high-contrast Hollywood Regency meets Versace Home sort of situation. The upscale country-style kitchen has—or at least did in 2010—a few rough hewn wood beams that stretch across the ceiling, some sort of stone tile flooring, white Shaker-style cabinetry topped with grey-veined white marble, a handful of multi-paned windows for light and ventilation, a couple of stainless steel sinks, and all the high-grade commercial-style appliances that can be expected in a house that cost its newest owner nearly three million clams. The children will note a series of windows replace overhead cabinets but that food and dishes (and etc.) get stashed in a bank of floor-to-ceiling pantry cabinets opposite long counter with the sinks.
Given that a sizable separate breakfast room with built-in banquette and wall of floor-to-ceiling sliding windows adjoins the kitchen, Your Mama is of the (perfectly meaningless) opinion that the kitchen itself might function better for a person who cooks if it were equipped with a chunky, free-standing work island—maybe something like this 19th century (and probably shockingly expensive) Belgian chocolatiers table with 3-inch blue stone slab—rather than the cute table for four that stood in the open center of the room back in 2010 when the house was put up for lease by the previous owner.
The dark wood floors extend up the stairs and throughout the second floor where two family/guest bedrooms share a windowed Jack ‘n Jill-type facility with marble counter tops and white tile shower/tub combination. Like the rest of the house, the master bedroom retains original (or vintage or retro-style) fixtures and hardware such as glass door knobs and twin pedestal sinks in the haphazardly updated and upgraded master bathroom that features very long-looking soaking tub with elegant (if narrow) marble surround, outré square white tile floors, and a separate shower stall with a very Less Than Zero glass block detail.
The kitchen and breakfast room open out to fenced blue stone terrace that steps down to the swimmer friendly swimming pool. Beyond the pool a vine draped pergola structure all but hides—we think—an above ground hot tub. On the other side of the driveway from the house, planted terraces and stone stairways connect to an undulating and very English-y lawn area with large, rectangular koi pond, a serene-looking water feature that would more likely serve as a swimming pool for Your Mama and The Dr. Cooter’s water-loving long-bodied bitches Linda and Beverly were we to occupy the premises, which of course we will not.
The double-sized lot, entirely hedges ringed by mature trees for privacy, allows for multiple entertaining areas, broad lawns, and extensive gardens that include and a small but very-California citrus fruit orchard.
Some of the luxury residences around Mister and Fourth Missus Oldman’s new residence include Katy Perry and Russell Brand’s old house, the one they bought in November 2009 for $3,250,000 and quickly flipped in July 2011 for $3,300,000. Even the most lackadaisical celebrity real estate watchers know that only months before splitting up Miss Perry and Mister Brand decamped about 6.5 miles east to an historic and much larger (and kinda spooky) 7 bedroom and 9 bathroom estate perched just above the mouth to West Hollywood’s Laurel Canyon they picked up in June 2011 for $6,500,000. Due to their impending and not very amicable-sounding dee-vorce, Your Mama imagines the estate will wind up on the market before too long if it’s not already being quietly shopped around to qualified clients.
If anyone actually walked anywhere in L.A.—it may be a cliché, children, but it’s a true, if somewhat exaggerated one—they could quickly stroll from Mister and Fourth Missus Oldman’s mini-estate to the much more grand compound of David Hyde Pierce and his husband Brian Hargrove who recently heaved their house on to the (open) market with an asking price of $7,500,000.
Also in the vicinity are well maintained (and seriously fortified) homes owned by the divinely kooky yo-yo dieter, Emmy-winning actress and Dancing With the Stars runner up Kirstie Alley, musician Michael Balzary (a.k.a. Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers), Weeds creator/writer/producer Jenji Kohan, comedian Jamie Kennedy and, we hear through the celebrity gossip grapevine, Twilight superstar Rob Pattinson, a slender man-boy of epic fame whose name alone can make girls of a certain age and gays of a certain ilk wet their pants with carnal desire.
listing photos: Extraordinary Real Estate