Though it is perhaps the most powerful talent agency in LA, William Morris Endeavor (WME) has been the subject of some rather undesirable press coverage in recent weeks. For those who may not know, WME was formed in 2009 from the merger of William Morris Group and the Endeavor Talent Agency, the latter of which had been run very successfully by the dynamic duo of Patrick Whitesell and Ari Emanuel. The pair now serve as co-CEOs of WME. And while it is Mr. Emanuel who commands the lion’s share of press, Yolanda thought it might be fun to briefly discuss Mr. Whitesell’s recent real estate activities. We have already discussed those of Mr. Emanuel, after all. (Spoiler alert for those who don’t know: Mr. Emanuel owns two Brentwood mansions).
Anywho. In February 2006, Mr. Whitesell and his then-new wife Lauren Sanchez paid $11,000,000 for an 8,860-square-foot mansion in the celeb-popular Beverly Hills Post Office area of LA, where all the homes have the coveted 90210 zip code but are technically not within Beverly Hills city limits, leaving them to make do with LA city services.
The blended family — he’s got a teenage son from a prior relationship, she’s got a teenage son with retired football star Tony Gonzalez, and together they also have two preteen children (one boy, one girl) — continues to reside on the 1.25 acre hillside property. Yolanda dug up a rather flowery old listing that says the mock-Med house has “South of France architecture” (calm down, gurl) and “outstanding integrety [sic]”. Mmmhmmm, Yolanda says. We’re absolutely certain that the Whitesell palace is the residential version of a mentsch, but perhaps our esteemed Rabbi Hedda will be gracious enough to confirm that in the comments section on this post.
The 8,860-square-foot mansion has materials imported from France (maybe there is some truth to that architecture statement? Nah…), a “chef’s kitchen”, a home theater, and 5 bedrooms and 6.5 baths. In a rear corner of the property is a two-story guest house of unknown size that features an additional 3 beds and 2 baths. Naturally there’s a pool/spa combo, a large grassy lawn, and a commodious gated motorcourt. The property is located on a little-known cul-de-sac that is shared with only three other homes, all of them much smaller than Mr. Whitesell’s pad.
Behind Mr. Whitesell’s wee estate is a lot that has been vacant for as long as Yolanda can recall. It was purchased way back in 2003 for just $800,000 by the late, great director/producer Tony Scott, who left it undeveloped and perished several years ago (in August 2012) after jumping off a San Pedro bridge. RIP.
Records show that Mr. Scott’s widow Donna sold the vacant lot in an off-market deal on August 17, 2017 for $2,850,000 to prominent local real estate agent Ben Bacal and prominent local attorney Ronald Richards. Bizarrely, Mr. Bacal and Mr. Richards flipped the vacant property just six days later — on August 23rd — to Mr. Whitesell for $4,800,000. That’s a $1.95 million profit earned in less than a week.
Yolanda is not sure how Mr. Bacal and Mr. Richards pulled off that little switch-a-roo, but there you have it. Maybe they didn’t let Widow Scott know they already had a big-bucks buyer lined up?
We digress. It should be noted that while the 1.8-acre vacant lot is large on paper, a substantial portion of that space is unusable hillside land. And while there’s no telling what intentions Mr. Whitesell (and Ms. Sanchez) have for the property, Yolanda would bet that it will either be left vacant or — more likely — be integrated into their current estate as additional garden space or perhaps a pad for a new tennis court. Or perhaps it could serve as a landing pad to accommodate Ms. Sanchez’s helicopter habit? She is now a full-time pilot, dontchaknow.
As for Mrs. Scott, for the last few years she has been living in the San Fernando Valley community of Encino, where in April 2013 she paid $5,550,000 for a nearly 12,000-square-foot mansion that was sold by sitcom star Kevin James. She also owns not one but two homes in the exclusive guard-gated Malibu Colony community — one right across the street from the other. And finally, Mrs. Scott also still holds the title to the John Barrymore estate in B.H.P.O., just down the street from Patrick Whitesell’s abode. The multi-structure compound is currently saddled with a reduced $19,999,000 pricetag and appears to be in remarkably well-preserved condition, though the property has now sat vacant for nearly 5 years.