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Modern Homes in Movies

by Sheila Elliott last modified Jan 27, 2014 08:09 AM
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Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Sheila Elliott at July 30. 2006

We have been asked by a production company to use our house in a feature film. The shooting will only last 7 day. We have been allowed to read the script and find it fasinating. Does anyone have any experience in this (letting someone film a movie at their home) and any advice for us (things to look out for, etc). We should be signing the paperwork within the next few days.

And, this is funny too. My husband and I were starting to think of all the movies that have modern homes in then... the two we came up with were sleeping with the enemy with Julia Roberts. And, Enough with Jennifer Lopez. Then we realized that both the characters living in their modern homes were controling men who beat their wifes. That is not very nice. So, our next question is... what are some cool modern homes used in movies, etc and how does the movie protray the family that lives there (the movie family, of course)

Any thoughts for us!!!


Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Gregory La Vardera at July 31. 2006

I started the Mod House Media Watch blog to track things like this. I've been too busy to keep up with it and have really let it slide, but I'll always post anything people send to me.

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by 5280mod at July 31. 2006

I'm thinking of older films...

Woody Allen's Sleeper uses a few homes and commercial buildings around Denver and Boulder, Colorado. The one pictured is from Sleeper and was designed by architect Charles Haertling. The most well known home from the movie was designed by Charles just sold recently and will be occupied as a primary year-round residence for the first time since construction started in 1969.,1793,HGTV_3460_2216241,00.html

While it doesn't qualify as a real home...the one created for Hitchcock's North by Northwest is a favorite.


Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Cara Cummins at July 31. 2006

We have leased our home for commercials, feature films, and still photography.

Still photography is best. Small crew, short day.

Feature film worst experience ever! They should have big insurance. They ruined our hardwood floors, hand prints all over the walls, broke toilet seats, broke a door, big dents in the walls (fight scene- body into wall), the list goes on. Oh yeah, our house belonged to the bad guy.
One neighbor went crazy with all the trucks, so the crew had to pay him as much as our fee. Other neighbors loved it! They had a catering truck, that feed the whole neighbor hood- all day!
The crew paid for the damage(but we had to arrange for the fix, wait for the insurance money). We never knew where the dent came from, until we saw the film- and realize oh,that is where the dent came from!

It has been 3 years since we had the film 'on our house', the bad neighbor moved, the good neighbors still speak kindly of the event. We can say, been there. But we would not want to go back!
For a whole week, no way! Unless you are on vacation(they are paying for a 4star resort).
Ask for alot of money, the State of Georgia has an incentive program for film crews. GA. refunds 50% of the location costs back to the crews.

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Sheila Elliott at July 31. 2006

Hey Tacstudios...

How are you guys doing? We got an offer on our house yesterday!!! We will let you know what happens. Until then, what movie was filmed at your house? I am going to have to watch it.

As you know, we have done several print jobs and commercials. THis will be our first film. Because I got to read the script, I feel a little at ease. No fights, no blood, no drinking, no parties... just a dad and son mostly. And, I requested a closed set, which the director seemed happy about... not a lot of people standing around that really do not need to be here. I also will have a house representative (me) here at all times.

Thanks for your reply. How long was your shoot schedule? And, please.... What movie?????

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Jon Briggs at July 31. 2006

Here's some interesting background on the house Hitchcock had built for "North By Northwest"... also one of my all-time favorites.

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by paul schuster at July 31. 2006


my advice is to get a big pile of cash up front and an attorney to write up something that has your interest in mind.

a few years ago I rented a 1965 ford van to a movie production company. they also used two more of my cars as back ground vehicles (vintage porsche and vintage bmw).

the movie was based on true events so they just HAD to have my van as they could not find another like it. they agreed to pay me a/b what I'd paid for it. but my van was white and it needed to be yellow (hertz rental yellow) so they painted it w/ what they called peel away paint

yet things didn't go well. I had also landed a job as an extra, in police uniform and wielding a fake gun durring the big shoot out scene at the marin county courthouse(Frank L Wright designed).

but that also meant I had to watch some actor who couldn't drive a manual tranny attempt to drive that 3 on the tree w/ non synchro gears. there was a lot of grinding and popping of the clutch. it was left idling for long periods, it would over heat spewing green fluids everywhere.

then they ran out of $ and were running over time. they did not return the van as/when promised in our written contract. they promised more $ etc. but then they shut down overnight! I had just spoken to the production folks the day before the cleared the offices and disappeared; and had not returned my van! weeks later a crew member called me. she was suing them b/c her paycheck had bounced. she wanted to tell me that my van was in a recording studio parking lot in berkeley. she met me there w/ the keys so I could reposess it.

I never did get paid for my day on the set or for the use of my other two vehicles.

I did get a good catered meal and a few tanks of gas. then a few months later I also started to get letters from the city of san francisco from all the parking tickets they'd acquired and forgot to pay while parking my van in the city. and the inside of the van had quite a bit of karo syrup mixed w/ red food coloring and oatmeal (fake blood and brains). that was fun to clean up.

my first payment was in cash and I also got a new windshield since they shot it out a few times.

I sold the van a couple years later. it was still 75% yellow w/ big patches of white.

so it's a lot to think about. get paid good $ and have some good paperwork to protect your home.

paul schuster[url href=]link to a few more pics of my almost famous van[/url][url href=]link to FLW designed marin county civic center[/url]


Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Splatgirl at August 01. 2006

Sorry for this being a bit off topic, but I'm curious to know how one promotes their home as a venue for these types of things?
Since nearly the day we moved in I've thought our house would make a great location for photography just because the light is absolutely amazing almost all of the time. Even my pathetic attempts at photography with my cheap Canon PowerShot come out looking great.
Do your homes have agents or what?

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Adam Burke at August 01. 2006

I have a friend who did this. The film, 'The Hunted' with Tommy Lee Jones and Benicio Del Toro featured her little Portland craftsman quite a lot. It was ex-special ops guy (Benicio)'s hideout while the feds and the police tried to find him. The did bang up her house pretty badly, even backing a car through her garage door repeatedly, but she got paid pretty well and used a good chunk of the money to finish remodeling. I remember her saying they were pretty flakey about promised repairs and such. Not really sure on too many details, although that movie was wretchedly bad.

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Cara Cummins at August 09. 2006

TaC studios is great! We have great clients we are doing work with, very busy.
The movie was 'Motive', not a great film in my mind- but the neighbors loved it!

As for filming or getting in the movies- some people have agents, some have friends---we have friends.
In the Atlanta area there is alot of filming, and the state of Georgia 'encourages' that kind of work.

But filming in your home is not for 'control' type person. Because they will promise you the world and deliever a dent in your wall!

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Sheila Elliott at August 10. 2006

Oh crap, I am the 'control type person. What have I gotten myself into?

I am glad you are busy. We are very impressed with your work. Hopefully you will have time for us when we are ready.

I am heading over to Netflix to see if Motive is available.

For Splatgirl... We have an agent that reps our home. She handles everything like money, contracts, insurance, etc... If something is damaged she takes care of it.

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Julie Brown at August 11. 2006

As the owner of an old modern -- an Eichler, I have to nominate the houses in The Incredibles. Eichlers pop up in a lot of ads too.

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by 5280mod at October 16. 2006

The Anniversary Party was filmed in a 1953 Richard Neutra home in the Hollywood Hills owned by Sofia Coppola.

The home is arguably the best thing about the movie.

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Debra Booth at October 16. 2006

Ah, North by Northwest. Yea, that is an interesting story about the design for North by Northwest. I was about 6 or 7 and living in Rapid City at the time. I think our old Chevy appears in a parking lot somewhere in the movie. I really can't attest to it's Wright origins or how they came up with the idea--in terms of location. At that time there was and probably still is a lake near Rapid City with a rocky butte at the back and there was in fact a modern house probably Wright influenced on that butte. It was pretty impressive to us summertime bathers but I only ever saw it from a distance and age 6 or 7, I remember wondering just how they got up there because it was very rocky. We would often go to that lake on hot summer days and that's when our car got into the act. They were filming--I don't know that the lake ever got into the movie, it was probably cut, but they did use the parking lot and then there was that house up there.

When the movie came out we went of course, and we also had been to Mount Rushmore plenty of times and knew that the house was not on top of Mount Rushmore--but it was on that butte in Rapid City. At least, that's what I remember.. . . . . .

Re: Modern Homes in Movies

Posted by Franco Vogt at October 25. 2006

I just saw Firewall on an overseas flight recently. The movie was OK but the house was nice. I think it was based in Seattle somewhere, I was drifting as I was watching so I am not 100% sure, but I recall the house being nice.

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