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Neutra’s Schaarman House & Star of Indie Film The Anniversary Party

Another incredible home by architect Richard Neutra sells in the Hollywood Hills. The Schaarman House, built in 1951, is considered a pristine example of Neutra’s work. The well-preserved home is tucked away on a hilltop cul-de-sac in the Hollywood Hills and boasts views in every direction. The four-bedroom sold for $7.475 to acclaimed streetwear designer Hiroki Nakamura. The classic Neutra also was the sole setting (and star) of the 2001 independent film The Anniversary Party, which was written, directed, and starred Jennifer Jason Leigh and Alan Cumming.

The Schaarman House is hidden from the street and boasts all the hallmarks of a Neutra masterpice. The home abounds in walls of glass, sharp lines, wood ceilings and a stacked stone fireplace.

There’s an entry garden reflecting pool. The walls of glass look out over the pool and into the pastoral hills of the San Gabriel Mountains.

The Anniversary Party was shot entirely within the home’s 3,378 square feet of living space. During the time of shooting the home was owned by director Sophia Coppola.

The film was written by Jennifer Jason Leigh and Alan Cumming for their friends, and shot in 19 days using SONY DSR-500 digital video cameras. At the time, films shot on digital video were rare and just beginning to gain dominance in the industry. These days shooting on film seems reserved for directors Christopher Nolan, Quentin Tarantino, and, yes, Sophia Coppola.

To raise money for the production, Alan Cumming and Jennifer Jason Leigh attempted to sell photographs of their own hoax wedding to tabloid newspapers.

The film’s cast includes a bevy of Hollywood and indie film stars including Oscar winners Kevin Kline and Gwyneth Paltrow, John C. Reilly, Jane Adams, Phoebe Cates, Jennifer Beals, Parker Posey, and Denis O’Hare.

The actors did their own make-up and hair, forsaking dressing rooms and trailers. Between takes the cast would hang out in the home’s kitchen or poolside smoking cigarettes. According to Alan Cumming, “Back then everybody chain smoked like chimneys.”

Part of the story line involves the husband of the actress played by Jennifer Jason Leigh becoming infatuated with the younger actress who is starring in the film he wrote. This somewhat foreshadowed the divorce of Jennifer Jason Leigh and director Noah Baumbach and his eventual partnership with Greta Gerwig, whom he met when she starred in the film Greenberg that he and Leigh wrote together.

Brett Lawyer of Hilton & Hyland and Aaron Kirman of John Aaroe Group were the listing agents. Brian Courville and JB Fung, also of John Aaroe Group, represented Nakamura.


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