Joseph Gordon-Levitt has listed a vintage, 1940s ranch-style residence in the Franklin Hills neighborhood between the celeb-favored Los Feliz and boho-chic Silver Lake areas of Los Angeles, Calif., for $3.85 million. The former “Third Rock From the Sun” star, who wrote, directed and starred in the “endearingly masturbatory” 2013 romantic dramedy “Don Jon” and portrayed the titular character in Oliver Stone’s disappointing 2016 docudrama “Snowden,” purchased the property in early 2015 for $3.25 million, notably above it’s not quite $3 million asking price. While clean and well maintained, a quick comparison with marketing materials from the time of his purchase suggests Gordon-Levitt made only a few minor cosmetic improvements to the house although the swimming pool and backyard landscaping appear to have had some important tending.
Originally designed in 1940 by architect Arthur Hawes and remodeled in the late 1940s by high-society architect Paul Williams with hints of his signature Hollywood Regency style, the 3,771 square foot house perches privately above the street atop flagstone retaining walls on a street-to-street hilltop parcel of more than one-third of an acre. There are four bedrooms, the smallest wrapped in inexpensive wood paneling, and 3 original bathrooms, one with retro-funky lemon yellow tile work and another with even funkier peach colored fixtures and shower tiles.
The elevated front porch opens to an entrance gallery flanked by a formal sitting room anchored by stately fireplace and a capacious family room that features a vaulted and beamed ceiling and multi-pane picture windows that provide an over the treetops mountain view. A baronial red brick fireplace in a shallow inglenook sits between a built-in bench and a slightly bowed walk-in wet bar. There’s a separate formal dining room plus an ample breakfast nook paneled in pine and accented with eye-catching scalloped woodwork that also enhances the kitchen that is, by today’s standards, compact and outdated with past-their-prime original cabinetry, frumpy beige linoleum flooring and dumpy, rental-grade appliances. The meandering service wing also contains an unexpectedly large, pine-paneled laundry room and a small sewing room or home office.
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The back of the U-shaped abode embraces an expansive, tree-shaded courtyard that overlooks the rehabbed backyard and swimming pool. At the far end of the pool there’s an open-air loggia and two bathroom/changing rooms with vintage fittings while a slim strip of lawn runs between the pool and a gated motor court and detached three-car garage.
Levitt, writer, producer, director and co-star opposite Channing Tatum of an upcoming R-rated musical comedy called “Wingman” continues to own a wood-shingled, contemporary chalet-style residence hidden behind a wall of leafy treetops in the trendy hills above the Silver Lake Reservoir that he picked up in 2008 for not quite $1.4 million.
listing photos: Compass