The Beckett House from “Delusion: The Blood Rite”Oct 10th, 2012 | By Lindsay | Category: This and That
Way back in February, fellow stalker David, of The Location Scout blog, wrote a comment on my post about the Milbank Mansion, the interior of which was used as the inside of the Finch home in Running with Scissors, informing me that the exterior shots of the Finch residence were filmed at the Beckett house in the West Adams District. David also let me know that the Beckett house had appeared in quite a few B-movies from the ‘80s, most of them of the horror genre. And while I did add the place to my To-Stalk list, for whatever reason, I never ventured out there. Then, a couple of weeks ago, I spotted the mansion in a Season 2 episode of Lie to Me (the Grim Cheaper and I just finished watching the entire series on DVD and absolutely fell in love with it – I am seriously bummed that it was cancelled!) and decided that I had to stalk the place as soon as possible. So I dragged the GC right on over there, just in time for my Haunted Hollywood postings.
The Beckett house was originally built in 1905 for Dr. Wesley W. Beckett and his wife, Iowa Archer. Dr. Beckett was a member of the board of trustees at USC and the namesake of the school’s Beckett Hall. According to commenter “KWB” on the Big Orange Landmarks blog (where you can read a fabulously detailed history of the residence), the doctor lived on the premises until his death in 1936. You can see a photograph of the home around the time that it was originally constructed here. It is amazing to me that, despite its severely dilapidated state, it still looks almost exactly the same today as it did over one hundred years ago. In 1981, the property apparently suffered a destructive fire on its top floors and while the then owners, thankfully, restored it, the mansion has since been left to deteriorate. Today, the home, which very much looks like a real life haunted house, is vacant and is used primarily for filming.
The Beckett house, which was designated a Los Angeles Historic–Cultural Monument in 1973, boasts 6 bedrooms, 4 baths, a whopping 5,415 square feet, and a 0.54-acre plot of land. You can check out some fabulous interior photographs of the mansion here. While some of the inside is in serious need of TLC, the majority of it is in far better shape than what the exterior would lead one to believe. Despite the decay, it is easy to see that the place must have been magnificent in its heyday!
As luck would have it, when we showed up to stalk the place, we happened to spot a man who was building some sort of elaborate scenery piece in the side yard. We got to talking with him and he informed us that he was setting up for an interactive Halloween-themed theatre production known as “Delusion: The Blood Rite“ that was going to be held at the mansion for the second year in a row. How incredibly cool is that? The 2011 play, which was simply titled “Delusion”, was named “Best Haunted Attraction” by FOX LA and “Hottest Ticket in L.A.” by NPR’s All Things Considered. Actor Neil Patrick Harris saw the show twice last October and loved it so much that he is actually co-producing it this year. Um, love it!
The play (which looks to be scaaaaaaaaaaary!) is currently running through November 10th. You can purchase tickets here and you can watch a video about it by clicking below.
Due to its marred appearance, the home has long been a favorite of location scouts seeking decrepit or spooky locales. As I mentioned above, the exterior of the property was used as the exterior of the mansion where the crazy Dr. Finch (Brian Cox) lived with his even crazier family in 2006’s Running with Scissors. As you can see below, the facade was painted Pepto-Bismol pink for the movie.
Thanks to The Official Halloween Message Board, I learned that the upstairs portion of the Beckett house was used as the upstairs of the home where the young Michael Meyers (Daeg Faerch) lived in Rob Zombie’s 2007 Halloween re-boot. Several areas of the abode appeared in the movie, including a bedroom (which you can see a real life photograph of here) that stood in for the bedroom of Judith Meyers (Hannah Hall, who also played “Young Jenny” in Forest Gump);
another bedroom (which you can see a real life photograph of here) that was used as Michael’s room;
a bathroom (which you can see a real life photograph of here);
a hallway (which you can see a real life photograph of here);
another bedroom (which you can see a real life photograph of here) that was used as the bedroom of Baby Boo (who was played by Sydnie Pitzer, Myla Pitzer and Stella Altman);
a back stairway (which you can see a real life photograph of here);
and the basement (which you can see a real life photograph of here). It was rather difficult to get a decent screen capture of the basement as the scene shot there was far too dark, but in the image below you can see that the small rounded windows that appeared in the movie match the home’s actual basement windows.
The living room of the Beckett house also masqueraded as the Strode family’s living room in the flick. You can see a real life photograph of that room here.
Thanks to Geoff, of the 90210Locations website, I learned that the Season 3 episode of Brothers and Sisters titled “Going Once . . . Going Twice”, which aired in 2008, featured the Beckett house as the bank-owned residence that Kevin Walker (Matthew Rhys) purchased as a surprise for his boyfriend, Scotty Wandell (Luke MacFarlane).
The interior of the property was also used in the episode.
The Beckett house was also shown in a real estate listing in the episode . . .
. . . and in an auction image, which stated that the property was located in Pasadena.
Both the exterior . . .
. . . and the interior of the house were also used extensively in the 2008 music video for Robert Plant and Allison Krause’s song “Please Read the Letter”.
You can watch that video by clicking below.
In the Season 2 episode of Lie to Me titled “Darkness and Light”, which aired in 2010, Dr. Cal Lightman (Tom Roth) tracks a missing and troubled young woman named Molly (Natalie Dreyfuss) to the dilapidated old mansion where she has been living with several other downtrodden girls.
The interior of the home also appeared in the episode.
Mike, from MovieShotsLA, informed me that the mansion was also used as the frat house where Emma Kurtzman (Natalie Portman) and Adam Franklin (Ashton Kutcher) met for the second time in the 2011 romantic comedy No Strings Attached.
As you can see below, though, a different location was used for the interior of the frat house.
The Beckett house was also featured in 1988’s Twice Dead, 1989’s The Immortalizer, 1992’s Evil Toons, 2000’s The Convent, 2001’s The Attic Expeditions, and 2005’s Lethal Eviction, all of which you can read about and see screen captures from on The Location Scout blog here.
You can find me on Facebook here and on Twitter at @IAMNOTASTALKER. And be sure to check out my latest post, about one of the best salads I’ve ever had in my life, on my other blog, The Well-Heeled Diabetic.
Big THANK YOU to David, from The Location Scout blog, for telling me about this location!
Until next time, Happy Stalking!
Stalk It: The Beckett house, from “Delusion: The Blood Rite”, is located at 2218 South Harvard Boulevard in the West Adams District of Los Angeles. The play will be running through November 10th and tickets are $45 per person. You can visit the official “Delusion: The Blood Rite” website here.