Über-producer Mary Parent has sold her Hollywood pedigreed home in a historic, fashionable and increasingly spendy pocket of Los Angeles’s Los Feliz area for $8.5 million. The veteran studio executive, currently Vice-Chairman of Worldwide Production at Legendary Entertainment where she oversees the blockbuster “MonsterVerse” franchise, turned a tidy profit on the stately spread she picked up about 11 years ago for $5.89 million from prolific theater, film and television producer John Wells.
Positioned on the high point of a more than half acre knoll-top parcel in the gated and famously celebrity-packed Laughlin Park enclave, the white-stucco and red tile roofed Spanish Colonial/English Tudor mash-up was designed and built by architect William J. Dodd in 1915. Charlie Chaplin reportedly took up temporary residence in the house before it was sold in 1920 to Cecil B. DeMille who built a long breezeway to link the house to his much larger mansion next door, now owned by Angelina Jolie. DeMille used the smaller residence until his death in 1959 as a production office, screening room and guesthouse.
Carefully restored to maintain or re-create original architectural detailing and comprehensively renovated to seamlessly integrate all manner of modern-day creature comforts, the 6,874-square-foot, four-bedroom and 5.5-bathroom residence was daringly decorated in a decadent yet austere, sensuously modern and contemporary art-filled variation on Hollywood glamour. There are inky black, high-gloss hardwood floors under foot, a variety of conspicuously glitzy light fixtures throughout and several huge and elaborately carved stone fireplaces that look as if they may have once warmed a baronial European manor house.
A vast living room under a cathedral ceiling has huge stained glass accented diamond paned leaded glass windows while an otherwise featureless screening room offers plush lounge seating and state-of-the-art projection and audio systems. The holiday dinner sized formal dining room was furnished with an eye catching red lacquer dining table under a massive, Vernor Panton-designed capiz shell chandelier and a more intimate breakfast room is filled with natural light due to floor-to-ceiling French doors and a silver-leafed ceiling treatment. Simply but expensively fitted with jet black painted wood cabinets, marble countertops and backsplashes and designer-grade stainless steel appliances, the kitchen opens to an informal dining area with a built-in banquette and five arched windows that provide postcard-perfect, head-on views of The Griffith Park Observatory.
An arched loggia hung with scarlet curtains reminiscent of a vintage movie house gives way to a grassy courtyard with simple rectangular swimming pool and trellis-shaded sunbathing patio. There’s also a more secluded spa set amid citrus trees and, on the other side of the house, a great sweep of generously irrigated and perfectly mown lawn ringed by beautifully trimmed and laced specimen trees.
Along with aforementioned Angelina Jolie, who bought her multi-acre compound over the summer of 2017 for $24.5 million, some of the other high-profile Laughlin Park homeowners include Ellen Pompeo, Natalie Portman, Emma Roberts, Kristen Stewart and married Tinseltowners Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard who last year shelled out $4.3 million for an English Country fixer-upper on one of the prestigious enclave’s largest parcels.