×

Megan Ellison Buys Beverly Hills Compound From Cinematographer Janusz Kaminski (EXCLUSIVE)

SELLER: Janusz Kaminski
BUYER: Megan Ellison
LOCATION: Beverly Hills, CA
PRICE: $15,500,000
SIZE: 4,965 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms plus two guest houses

YOUR MAMA’S NOTES: Property records show celebrated cinematographer Janusz Kaminski sold his long-time compound in Beverly Hills in a covert, off-market deal for $15.5 million and several plugged in tattletales including Our Fairy Godmother in Bel Air and real estate yenta Yolanda Yakketyyak snitched the new owner is none other than bottomless-pocketed software heiress turned three-time Oscar-nominated powerhouse film and television producer Megan Ellison. The Polish-born cinematographer — who frequently collaborates with Steven Spielberg, has been nominated for six Oscars and is the winner of two, for “Schindler’s List” and “Saving Private Ryan” — acquired the property for $2.125 million in 1996, shortly after he married his now ex-wife Holly Hunter.

The 1.12-acre spread, discreetly and privately tucked down a long, gated and tree-shaded driveway on a quiet and coveted street behind the Beverly Hills Hotel, is anchored by a 4,965-square-foot, four-bedroom and four-bathroom 1920s Spanish hacienda-style residence renovated and upgraded, according to listing descriptions from earlier in the year when the property was available as a luxury lease at $50,000 and then $40,000 per month, with “modern influences.” A grandly proportioned but comfortably casual living room features blond hardwood floors, a fireplace, a reading nook with built-in cushioned banquette and at least two sets of steel-trimmed glass doors that extend almost all the way to the generously high and beamed ceiling. An expensively outfitted and sky-lit kitchen with U-shaped center island is open to a family room and informal dining space with vaulted ceiling and glass doors to an outdoor living room with kiva-style corner fireplace that overlooks a curved swimming pool and spa.

The multi-structure compound additionally offers a guest cottage that dates to the 1920s and includes a living room, full kitchen, one bedroom and one bathroom. A third, contemporary and partially subterranean structure with a drought tolerant green roof, was built as an office/media lounge with smooth-paneled walls, a couple of banks of floor-to-ceiling bookshelves, a full bathroom and a solid wall of floor-to-ceiling windows that slide open to a sunny patch of grass.

Over the last decade Miz Ellison, who just lost a bundle on another fixer-upper property in Beverly Hills that she bought in April 2016 for $13.5 million and sold per property records in November for $12.25 million, has become a property gossip column staple the last several years having bought and sold a handful of multi-million dollar homes in Los Angeles. Between April 2009 and February 2011 she paid a combined $32.6 million for three side-by-side properties on a prime street in the Bird Streets ‘hood above the Sunset Strip that she sold at an enviable profit over the late summer and fall of 2013 for a total of $46.75 million. Her current residential holdings in Los Angeles include but may not be limited to a multi-residence mountaintop compound in the Mount Olympus neighborhood above L.A.’s Laurel Canyon that she acquired in a handful of transactions between late 2013 and the spring of 2015 for a total outlay of about $35 million. So the real estate scuttlebutt we’ve repeatedly heard goes, the “True Grit” and “American Hustle” producer plans to radically renovate the property, hence her need for a temporary residence such as the one she just bought.

The prolific producer, who has at least seven high-profile film and television projects on her docket including an as-yet untitled David O. Russell series staring Oscar winners Robert De Niro and Julianne Moore that will air on Amazon, not surprisingly also maintains an impressive and expensive pied-a-terre in New York City. In May 2013 she shelled out $2.8 million for a quirky one-bedroom and one-bathroom apartment — it has a circular, dome-ceilinged living room 31-feet in diameter — in an iconic Beaux Arts building on the border between Soho and Little Italy and our research suggests that in March of this year (2016) she quietly paid $3.425 million for an adjacent two-bedroom and two-bathroom apartment that according to online marketing materials from the time of the sale features an 18-foot-high, sky-light topped ceiling in the living/dining room that stretches more than 35-feet from end to end.

Listing photos: The Agency (via Hot Pads)

Popular on Variety

More Dirt

  • Dorit Kemsley House Encino

    Real Housewife Dorit Kemsley Snags $6.5 Million Modern Farmhouse

    Though she and her husband, British property developer Paul Kemsley, have been plagued by highly-publicized reports of legal and financial woes, “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” cast member Dorit Kemsley has managed to cough up $6.475 million for a brand-new Los Angeles mansion, records reveal. Located in a primo pocket of the increasingly posh Encino [...]

  • Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey Selling Hollywood

    Twitter's Jack Dorsey Lists Hollywood Hills Architectural

    Back in August 2018, longtime Twitter and Square CEO Jack Dorsey forked out $4.225 million for an uber-contemporary home set near the very top of the Hollywood Hills. Scarcely a year later, the tech titan’s award-winning property — it was the AIA’s L.A. Residential Architectural Merit Award recipient for 2017, the year it was built [...]

  • Garrett Camp Mansion Los Angeles

    Uber's Garrett Camp Asks $10 Million for Hollywood Hills Mansion

    On the heels of his record-breaking $72.5 million splurge on a brand-new Beverly Hills contemporary compound, Uber and Expa founder Garrett Camp has listed one of his two “starter” homes in the nearby Hollywood Hills. Tucked high above the eternally chic Sunset Strip and bearing more than a passing resemblance to a hulking concrete bunker, [...]

  • Anne Heche House

    Heche and Tupper Split With Rustic Lakeside Cabin

    It’s been about 1.5 years since Anne Heche and James Tupper publicly confirmed they’d parted ways after a decade together and, not surprisingly, they’re now looking to get rid of their formerly shared homes in both Los Angeles and the southern California mountain resort community of Lake Arrowhead. The erstwhile couple’s stylishly dressed Hollywood home [...]

  • Todd Chrisley Mansion

    ‘Chrisley Knows Best’ Stars Try to Sell Nashville Mansion Amid Fraud Indictment

    Just two months after they plunked down nearly $3.4 million for a stately mansion in the tony Nashville suburb of Brentwood and two months before they pleaded not guilty and posted a combined $200,000 bond for their release this week on a multi-count indictment that alleges myriad financial crimes, Todd and Julie Chrisley of USA [...]

  • Paul Schrader Condo

    Paul Schrader Writes Himself Out of Manhattan Condo

    After almost a decade of ownership, vaunted veteran movie scribe and director Paul Schrader plans to write himself out of a glass-walled condominium in New York City’s trendy, art-gallery filled West Chelsea neighborhood with a ticket price of $3.25 million. The 2019 Oscar nominee (“First Reformed”), who has written and, in some cases, directed an [...]

  • Justin Bieber Mansion

    Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin’s Snazzy Toluca Lake Rental Now Up for Sale

    Sometime around Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin’s surreptitious marriage last September in a downtown Manhattan courthouse and a handful of months before they dropped $8.5 million on a spec-built mansion in the Benedict Canyon area of Beverly Hills earlier this year, they were rumored and reported to have forked over a knee-buckling $100,000 per month [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content