Famed Culver Studio Hangs Out For Sale Sign
October 6, 2011
The historic Culver Studios has been listed for a reported $150 million according to the Financial Times. The studio is best known for its 1939 iconic production of “Gone With The Wind.”
The Studio was founded by Thomas Ince in 1918, and after Ince’s untimely death the studio was expanded in 1925 by the film director Cecil B. DeMille. Since DeMille, other owners include RKO, Howard Hughes, David Selznick, Desilu Productions (Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball), Pathe, Laird International, Sony and Hal Roach Studios, which was considered "the largest comedy making studio in the business."
The studio is being sold by Pacific Coast Capital Partners, Lehman Brothers, and Picbengro. Sony reportedly sold the studio in 2004 for $125 million. Former owner Sony is mentioned as a possible buyer.
Along with Gone with the Wind, Citizen Kane, King Kong, Rebecca, Notorious, Raging Bull, ET, City Slickers, The American President, Armageddon and Contact, were filmed on the lot along with numerous television shows including Bonanza, The Andy Griffith Show, Hogan's Heroes, The Untouchables, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, Lassie and Gomer Pyle.
The studio has also been popular with recording artists who have utilized it to rehearse (Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Don Henley, and Janet Jackson) and to shoot music videos (Ricky Martin, Madonna, Michael Jackson, and Luis Miguel).
Also filmed at The Culver Studios have been Baywatch, Mad About You, The Nanny and Arrested Development.
One of the most famous scenes from "Gone With The Wind", when the city of Atlanta burns, was filmed on the lot in 1939. The sets from "King Kong" were part of what they set fire to.
The studio itself reports rumors of hauntings among the studio staff. Stage hands high in the catwalks have reportedly been confronted by a ghostly figure resembling Thomas Ince. It's rumored that late at night a spirit -- some say Gloria Swanson -- roams the halls of the mansion. Culver Studio commented “While there is no proof of these sightings, eerily similar reports occur year after year.”
CB Richard Ellis is the listing agent.