Wednesday, August 15, 2018
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Sorry, Lance Bass: HGTV will buy, buy, buy Brady Bunch house, Discovery CEO says

LOS ANGELES — HGTV is the winning bidder for the Brady Bunch house in Studio City, beating out a small crowd of buyers that included ‘N Sync singer Lance Bass.

Discovery Inc. Chief Executive David Zaslav announced the news Tuesday morning on an earnings call with Wall Street analysts. Earlier this year, Discovery completed acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive, which includes such cable networks as HGTV and the Travel Channel, in a $12 billion deal.

"One of our projects for HGTV will speak to those Brady Bunch fans on the call," Zaslav said. "You may have heard that the house from the iconic series was recently on the market in California. I’m excited to share that HGTV is the winning bidder and will restore the Brady Bunch home to its 1970s glory as only HGTV can. More detail to come over the next few months but we’ll bring all the resources to bear to tell safe, fun stories about this beloved piece of American TV history."

According to Douglas Elliman agent Ernier Carswell, who holds the listing, the Studio City property received a total of eight offers from buyers that included entertainers, corporate buyers, individual family groups and investors. The seller of the home, listed for $1.885 million, selected the ultimate prevailing bid and a backup.

Among those in the running was Bass, who publicly announced on social media that his offer for the Studio City house had been accepted. But a day later, in a subsequent message, Bass said he was "heartbroken" to learn of a "corporate buyer (Hollywood studio) who wants the house at any cost."

Carswell told The Los Angeles Times on Saturday that the sale to Bass was not a done deal and that the seller had not made a final decision at that time. He declined to identify the parties behind the two accepted bids, but said escrow would close in about 10 days.

The two-story house was used for outdoor representations of the beloved television family’s abode. That included the show’s opening and closing scenes as well as numerous interludes to denote the time of day. Interior scenes for The Brady Bunch were filmed in studio.

The 2,500-square-foot home’s floor plan bears little resemblance to the layout familiar to TV viewers. A rock-wall fireplace and wood-paneled walls are among classic details in the living room, which has a wet bar. There are three bedrooms and three bathrooms — a tight fit for even one-half of the Brady Bunch.

The lot on which the house sits, a 12,500-square-foot parcel that abuts the L.A. River, led some to speculate that a developer might swoop in and tear down the house in order to build a new multimillion-dollar residence.

However, Carswell told the Times last month that consideration would be given to buyers who wanted to preserve the iconic property.

"We’re not going to accept the first big offer from a developer who wants to tear it down."

Violet and George McCallister bought the two-bedroom, three-bathroom house in 1973 for $61,000, records show. The series ran from September 1969 to March 1974 before moving into reruns in syndication. The McCallisters are both deceased and their children are selling the home.

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