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Frankie’s House from “Alpha Dog”

Jul 28th, 2011 | By | Category: Movie Locations


One location that I have been on the lookout for for what seems like forever now is the home belonging to Frankie Ballenbacher’s (aka Justin Timberlake’s) father, Juergen Ballenbacher (aka Chris Kinkade), in the ultra-dark and depressing movie Alpha Dog.  As I have expressed a few times before on this blog, I was not at all a fan of the 2006 flick, which was based on the real-life kidnapping and murder of 15-year-old Nicholas Markowitz by Jesse James Hollywood and his group of drug-dealing cronies, as it was far too disturbing for my taste.  But I did absolutely fall in love with the mid-century-modern-style abode where the teenaged kidnap victim, who was named Zack Mazursky (aka Anton Yelchin) in the movie, spent the majority of his imprisonment.  I started looking for the Ballenbacher residence pretty much immediately after first watching the film and, even though I knew it was located somewhere in the Palm Springs area, try as I might, I just could not seem to find it.  Then on June 1st, fellow stalker/location manager Scott Trimble, of the STS Locations website, wrote a comment on my post about the Caliente Tropics Resort, the motel featured in Alpha Dog, stating that he had actually worked on the movie.  So I immediately wrote to him and enlisted his help in tracking the place down.  And even though he had only worked on the portion of the movie that was filmed in Los Angeles and was therefore unsure of where the Ballenbacher home was located, he was instrumental in finally helping me to find it.  Thank you, Scott!  Smile So a couple of weekends ago, while out visiting my parents in Palm Springs, I dragged the Grim Cheaper right on out to stalk the place.

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In real life, the Ballenbacher residence is known as the Koerner House and it boasts 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, 4,224 square feet of living space, and 1.1 acres of land.  The abode was originally designed in 1955 by legendary mid-century modernist architect E. Stewart Williams, the very same man who constructed the Kenaston Residence in Rancho Mirage – the dwelling where Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie posed for their now-infamous July 2005 W Magazine photo shoot.  As you can see above, the home is pretty darn incredible!

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In Alpha Dog, drug-dealing kingpin Johnny Truelove (aka Emile Hirsch) orders his friend Frankie to take Zack, whom Johnny is holding as a marker for a $1,200 debt Zack’s brother has incurred, to Frankie’s father’s house in Palm Springs to hide out for a few days.  The vast majority of the movie was filmed at the dwelling and both the exterior . . .

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. . . and the interior of the property were used in the flick.

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And while the house is pretty darn incredible, it was actually the backyard area, which appeared quite frequently in Alpha Dog, that I became so enamored of.  What an absolutely amazing piece of property!  As you can see above, because it is so strikingly beautiful, it was rather difficult for me to narrow down which screen captures of the backyard to post.

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While driving to stalk the Koerner House, the GC and I spotted several open house signs and, thinking that it might just be the Koerner House that was open and that I might just have the opportunity to go inside and see that amazing backyard in person, I almost had a full-blown heart attack!  Sadly though, it was in fact a neighboring residence that was hosting the open house, so I guess, for the time being at least, I will just have to settle for looking at aerial views of the property.

Big THANK YOU to Scott Trimble, from the STS Locations website, for finding this location for me!  Smile You can follow Scott on Twitter, and learn all about his many location scout adventures, here.

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  Smile

Stalk It: The Koerner House, aka Frankie Ballenbacher’s home from Alpha Dog, is located at 1275 South Calle De Maria in Palm Springs.



Leave a comment »

  1. William Wickwire says:

    The house is on a Palm Springs Modernism tour this weekend on 2/25/2017. Tickets are $35.

  2. Kaz says:

    Big Fan Of the movie !!! I’m from the UK id love to have a tour of the house

  3. Allan Lamb says:

    My partner Henry and I are the owners of the Koerner Residence in Palm Springs. Just a small correction to your blog, the house is situated on 1.1 acres not a quarter acre as written.
    We would be happy to give the author of this blog a tour of our home!

    • Lindsay says:

      Hi Allan,
      Thank you so much for commenting! I am in love with your house and OMG would die for a tour! 🙂 Thanks for the correction on acreage, too. I fixed the info on the post.
      Happy Stalking :),

    • A. Alland says:

      I am not a stalker either, but I appreciate mid-century architecture and I love to see how people live. I toured the Deep Well area on a walking tour for Modernism Week yesterday & we stopped in front of your house. If the invitation is still open, I would love to tour your home, Allan. I could reciprocate by showing you Blue Skies Village. I am a neighbor to one of Troy Bankord’s creation.

    • Kyle Engelbrecht says:

      Would the owner be willing to give me a tour. Huge fan of the movie!!

  4. Erica says:

    this is one of my all time favorite movies! I have frequented your blog and have always loved it and never noticed these alpha dog posts until recently. anyway, the locations i think personally make the movie- well, that and Justin! my god, this house is incredible. me and you have the same mind! every time I watch that movie (or any movie, honestly) I always wonder where these locations are, I wish i could go in them, & I wish they would pan over just a little bit more & give us a tour and some history! most of all, I wish they would just give me the house but that is clearly a dream. lol. thank you so much for sharing! your blog is a life saver. well, maybe im not going to die without it……but you never know! now i will be googling these addresses all night to get a closer look or to see whats down the street. lol!

  5. Ashley says:

    Wow I’m so in love with the landscaping, especially the perfect lawns. So Palm Springs-y! Great view of the mountain behind the house too.

    • Dave McCune says:

      You’re absolutely right- It’s a great house no doubt, but the lush, mature landscaping really makes it what it is. Without that it’s a nice house, like many others in the area.

  6. Erin says:

    Love that house

  7. don says:

    Good stuff and nice pics
    L. D.

Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. […] Williams, & Williams.  At the time, now-legendary architect E. Stewart Williams, who designed Frankie’s house from Alpha Dog which I blogged about last Thursday, was a novice who had just joined his father’s firm and had yet to design a private residence.  […]

  2. […] Tiffany Hartunian (aka ER’s Alex Kingston), in the 2006 movie Alpha Dog.  As I mentioned in yesterday’s post about the Koerner House , while I did not exactly love me some Alpha Dog, darn if the flick’s location scouts did not […]

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