New interest in 7740 Mulholland Drive!

20 Apr

Is seems that we have renewed interest in an
account of what really happened to Mulholland House – Farm of  7740

It looks like that most likely Robert Matzen and
Mazzone could have all the detailed dates to the complete scenario of
WHAT really
happened to the property after Errol lost the property to Lili Damita;
was apparently in 1953 or very near this time?

To whom did she sell the property?  Most
likely to a developer as the property was
already split into two lots or maybe three in 1958?  Errol’s
property was 10.5 acres. The property
was advertises in the Los Angeles Times in 1958 as a five acre land
parcel and
a 2.5 acre lot including the house and tennis courts.  This
adding up to only 7.5 acres!   The third parcel
must have been 3 acres and
what happened to it and who purchased this one? 

Suzy Hamblin wife of Stuart was looking at the 2.5
property in 1958, which was for sale at $160.000, but Stuart, never
seeing the
property found it to expensive.  A year
or so later in 1959 Suzy found the property still for sale and this time
purchased it, but not 2.5 acres, but 7.5 acres for $180,000, these are
out of the book “Errol Flynn Slept Here” 
The Hamblins lived at Mulholland for 21 years to 1980, after
which Rick
Nelson comes in as the new owner.  In
April 1980, the Nelsons bought Errol Flynn's 1941 Mulholland Drive estate for

Next question – when did the property go on the
market again
and who purchased it? Was it Helen Hunt? It is known that she built a
right on the foundation of Errol’s house. 
Was it Helen Hunt who ordered the demolition of Errol’s house?  It is known that she sold the house to Justin
Timberlake who occupies it to this day.

Is there anybody of our EFBlog authors who can fill
in some
or all of the questions and gaps? 

— Tina


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  1. Anonymous

    April 21, 2010 at 1:35 am

    We have one reply from Robzak!
    Hi Rbert;
    Thank you for your reply saying: The owner's name was Steve Weiss, and it was he who razed Mulholland House.
    That is most interesting! Now did Steve Weiss purchase the 7.5 acres – house and all from the Nelsons? Why would Steve Weiss demolish the house? I wonder if Steve Weiss is still alive?
    How does Helen Hunt come into this scenario, building the house on the foundation of Errol's house and selling it Justin Timberlake?
    Questions, nothing but questions, but we should learn the history of Mulholland House and Farm for the blog's chronicle.
    Take care!

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    • costa

      October 16, 2013 at 5:42 pm

      the story about thechain of ownership is a bit more interesting . the house was purchased from rick by some friends who were helping him get his career back on the road . the deal was done very informally on trust . then rick died in the plane crash .a straw buyer took interim title on a hand shake deal and one of the actual buyers died so the guy who had the paperwork ended up with the property.

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    • costa

      October 16, 2013 at 8:43 pm

      does anyone her know anything about the secret underground room ?

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  2. Anonymous

    April 21, 2010 at 2:18 am

    Interesting! I have been wondering that myself after reading Errol Slept Here too. That book was so fascinating. I wonder why Nora didn't try to buy it later for her daughters or why say, didnt't one of them try to buy it. It probably would of been too emotional or something for them perhaps, but maybe then it could of been preserved or passed down to the grand children. I wonder what happened to Errol's portrait, I know that Patrice had it for a while until a storm hit her property, does any one know where it is now and what ever happened to his mural he had hanging behind his bar. I know it was removed and it ended up at an antique shop I think, but where is it now? I was also wondering, why didnt one of the authors take a souvie, like a swtich plate or even a door knob, maybe they thought better but I was thinking that when I saw the-way-it-looks-today photos . Just wondering, Tammy.

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  3. Anonymous

    April 21, 2010 at 5:11 am

    Hi Tammy;
    You are asking as to why Nora did not purchase the property. It was sold in 1959 for $180,000.00, which is on the inflation calculator today $1,400.000.00, maybe not much for some people, but plenty for others.
    Now you have to calculate in what kind of situation was Nora? She was divorced from Dick Haymes and she had only that of a normal average persons' income, to purchase a $1,400.000 property is quite risqué. Now Nora could have maybe done it by splitting the property into three parcels, and sold two 2.5 acres parcels for maybe $50.000 she still would have to come up with $80.000. If she had money for down payment – the rest could be in a mortgage. Then comes the question did she have enough income to cover the costs, PLUS the upkeep and the taxes. Not so easy for Nora, in particular as she was left with nothing from her three marriages.
    Errol's portray is still in Patrice's possession in Jamaica and it is not a good portray of Errol, he somewhat looks like Omar Sharif on it. I should put up the two picture on the blog side by side – good idea.
    All Errol's possessions of Mulholland went to Lili when she received the house. Errol was in Europe. Errol received from Lili a very raw deal. It was easy for Lili to be so generous with Errol's money and bestow Sean's school in 1984 with $10,000.000 million dollars. At least that what I read!
    That's all Tammy for today!

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  4. Anonymous

    April 22, 2010 at 1:24 am

    It's just ashame. Well thanks for clarifying for me. What ever became of his mural that was behind his bar do you know? I read that it went to an antique dealer or shop, but what happenend to it after that? I wonder if Errol's valet/servant Alexandre ever wrote a book about his time with him, that would be another good read! Thanks Tina

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  5. Anonymous

    April 22, 2010 at 2:30 am

    Hi Tammy;
    Sorry, I do not have any answers for you regarding your latest questions.
    Take care,

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  6. Anonymous

    April 27, 2010 at 12:16 am

    The very first thing I noticed when I was on the property in March 1986 was the smell of dryrot. It hit me the instant I walked near the dining room on my way to the pool. It is the smell of mortal disease in a house. From what Jack Marino has said, the owner had intentions to renovate the house, but was facing code problems; for example, the wiring needed to be replaced. So the frame was bad and the wiring was bad–well, everything was bad. The Hamblens got out of the place in 1979 and by that time it was already in decline. The Nelson twins told me that the place was so run down when their dad bought it that they couldn't believe their eyes. It certainly wasn't Helen Hunt who ordered the demolition of Mulholland Farm. It died what you might call a natural death, and could only have been saved by what I estimate to have been a million-dollar renovation in 1980s currency. The mansion that now sits on the footprint is worth many times that, so in business terms, the teardown made sense. It's sad for us that the house has slipped into legend. When Mike called and told me of the demolition in 1988, his voice was choked with grief, as if we had lost an uncle, and I sat there stunned…in a sense, I have remained stunned. It's crazy that we've all gotten so attached to a house, but it had a life and a character all its own.

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  7. Anonymous

    April 27, 2010 at 1:49 am

    I think the house is a legend, just like its first owner. Having your wonderful book with all the pictures of the inside and outside when it was in its “glory” and then in its “decline” right down to just the fireplace standing makes it “ok” as we have the memories. It is sad, though, very sad because I also felt stunned and I was never physically there as you were.

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  8. Anonymous

    April 28, 2010 at 5:00 am

    Hi Robert;
    Thank you so much for your great comment about Errol's house, which is very much appreciated.
    So, you say dry rot – wow – that is a condition when unprotected wood is exposed to moisture for a long time.
    Dry rot will weaken wood and also leave it to be infestered by several species of fungus. The fungus digests the parts of the wood, which gives wood strength. Wood has to be professionally maintained, may that be a house, a boat or anything built in wood. For example take the “Sirocco”, she was a wooden ketch and Errol maintained her as she is still around today. Anybody who owns a house knows that there is upkeep involved, after so many years one has to replace certain electric wiring and voltage. As our appliances grew the upkeep of electric wiring is essential and so is the plumbing. I am sure Errol’s house in his time, most likely had led piping and over the years we all had to change our houses to copper piping, as it was established the led pipes were poisonous.
    Hmm – there is a thought, I wonder if Errol had some led poisoning, that could have affected him too, but then Errol did not drink to much water.
    In short, we all have to keep up our houses to maintain the property value. Errol's house was only 46 years old when it was razed, that is no age for any house. There are wooden houses which are hundreds of years old.
    It is so heart wrenching to find out that Errol’s house died of neglect!
    But there are still more unanswered questions! I wonder Robert if you could fill us in who were the next owners after the Nelson’s in 198? what. Who was the owner in 1988 who wanted to renovate, but found it to be a problem to do so and had the house demolished? Who built the new house? When did Helen Hunt own the property? Was Helen Hunt the next owner after the Nelson’s? Who was it or owned the new house in 1988 after Errol’s house was torn down? Did Helen Hunt sell to Justin Timberlake and if so when?
    It would be nice to have a chronological listing of ownerships of Errol’s house.
    Sorry Robert to be such a pest and firing questions nothing but questions at you, but that’s what we are all about, finding out everything we can of “Our Man from Hollywood”!

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  9. Anonymous

    April 30, 2010 at 3:26 am

    Do you know what happened to the lions that guarded the path to the tennis court? Also, wasn't the casino moved to a new location and is it still standing? Wasn't it built around the same time as the main house?

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  10. Anonymous

    April 30, 2010 at 7:30 pm

    The casino, which you can see from my photo of it in Matzen's book, was in rickety shape and is now long gone. When I was at the house in '83 it, and most of the structures were already in very poor condition.
    As for the lions, they may still be there, as it appears that the original tennis court (or at least the location of the present court) is still used. I'll see if I can find out.

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  11. Anonymous

    May 1, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    Sorry to be reentering the conversation a little late. Our research extended until the demolition of the Flynn house, and I am not certain fn the chain of ownership of the property after that. The last people to actually live in the house were Gunnar and Matthew Nelson. No one inhabited it after that. Because of the simple math involved, it's clear there were sound financial reasons to bulldoze the house and start over, as painful as that is for any of us to contemplate. In fact, the upper property was completely done over from scratch and is now the heavily fortified Timberlake compound. As for the lions, I disagree with my colleague Robzak that the lions could still be there given the extensive sculpting of the plateau, including a new path to the tennis court that wraps into the hillside rather than accessing via a steep staircase. I'm afraid the lions are lost to antiquity, along with all the original fixtures that witnesses saw in heaps when the house was gutted. Wouldn't it be great to know what happened to the light fixtures, sinks, toilets, and pine paneling and pocket doors?
    Lead poisoning–I honestly don't think Errol was at home enough during his dozen years of ownership of the house to be adversely affected by anything on that hill. He worked long hours, sailed the seas, and traveled extensively in support of his pictures and lifestyle. He was truly a part-time inhabitant of Mulholland Farm and left its care and maintenance to first Alex Pavlenko and then Marge Eddington.

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  12. Anonymous

    November 25, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    I just found out (see below).

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  13. Anonymous

    November 25, 2010 at 5:54 pm

    I mean “above”. My computer was upside down.

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  14. Anonymous

    November 26, 2010 at 6:02 am

    Reading RM's answer really late, don't know how I missed it. Thank you! Yes, where did all that paneling go? Of course it would have to be stripped of white paint. Restoration projects could have used those pocket doors.

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    • Don Struke

      March 11, 2013 at 4:03 pm

      Well, this is really late to the party but I want to mention some FlynnThings: On one of my trips to the West Coast (I’m in Maryland), I happened upon the Mulholland Farm property when it had just been demolished. I recall the stone steps of what I assume was a main entrance were still in place, and over to the left of the entry to the property was a swimming pool – whether it was the original or not, I don’t know. The other detail I remember that on a wooden pole near the pool was a telephone. I thought “How perfectly Hollywood. No place to sleep but the two most important things were in place: a pool and a phone so The Agent can reach you.”

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  15. costa

    October 16, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    rick nelson sold the house to a his friend doug , from san Francisco . then rick passed away in the plane crash .the celebrity owners came later

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