Hollywood’s past is as colorful and intriguing as the movie roles its filmmakers create for our favorite stars. Since the movie industry exploded in this little piece of land in Los Angeles, the public has been fascinated not just by the movies, but more so with the intriguing aspects of our favorite actors’ personal lives. From hook-ups to clandestine extra-marital affairs to cat fights to mysterious deaths, we always love a good scandal to spice up our mundane lives. Yes, we inadvertently seek entertainment in the tumultuous lives of our favorite public figures.
One of the more intriguing aspects of Hollywood is anything that has to do with the supernatural. We love hearing the actors recount stories about ghost sightings in the studios where they film or the homes they live in. But what’s more fascinating to hear are tales about celebrities from beyond the grave. Usually the dearly departed who manifest themselves to the living are those who died way before their time or under mysterious circumstances. Here are some famous folk who are said to be making their presence felt in some of the decades-old homes that dot Hollywood.
11. Marilyn Monroe’s home in Brentwood
There have been a myriad of conspiracy theories on the cause of Marilyn Monroe’s untimely death, the most accepted one being an apparent drug overdose. But the fact of the matter is, she died way before she was ready and proof of this is the story that her spirit restlessly wanders her house in Brentwood, Los Angeles. According to an October 2010 article in Business Insider, Monroe’s spirit not only dwells in her home, but also in the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, where she was often billeted in the 1950s.
10. Lucille Ball’s home in Beverly Hills
Queen of Comedy Lucille Ball passed away from a ruptured aorta during surgery in 1989, according to Business Insider and an entry in the Legends of America website. At the time of her demise, she was living in a sprawling mansion on Roxbury Drive in Beverly Hills. The house has been given a major makeover since her death, probably something that was not to Ball’s satisfaction, as her spirit has been said to manifest itself there. The new owners have reported broken windows, voices from an unused attic, and different objects unexplainably moving from one spot to another.
9. The Pickfair Estate in Beverly Hills
One of the first “royal” couples of Hollywood were two actors from the roaring twenties: silent screen star Mary Pickford and the dashing Douglas Fairbanks. The pair was married for 16 years, in which time they purchased a Beverly Hills mansion that they jointly called The Pickfair Estate, as reported by Business Insider. When the couple divorced, Pickford got to keep the house and her new husband Buddy Rogers moved in. After Pickford’s demise, Rogers claimed that Pickford’s spirit, donned in a long, white gown, appeared to him. He moved out soon after.
8. Harry Houdini House in Los Angeles
The grounds on which the home that magician Harry Houdini’s spirit is said to frequent are supposedly not actually owned by him, according to Business Insider. Rather, it was the home of his friend and the famous Houdini was said to be a constant guest in the sprawling mansion’s adjoining guest house. Though the original structure has since been destroyed, the grounds still stand and as mentioned in the Legends of America website, Houdini’s ghost is said to have been seen wandering about the property.
7. Errol Flynn’s Mulholland Farm in Los Angeles
Swashbuckling actor Errol Flynn’s home is said to be dwelled in by his spirit. It’s no surprise that he’s still attached to it even in the afterlife, as the actor was said to have built it from the ground up. Flynn initially had a modest ranch-style home put up and he added little amenities a bit at a time through the years. After his death, the property was eventually purchased by singer Ricky Nelson, whose daughter reported many mysterious happenings, as stated in Business Insider. Strange sounds like things being thrown at walls and glass breaking were assumed to be the doing of Flynn’s spirit.
6. Joan Crawford’s house in Brentwood
She was one of the most prolific actresses of her time, often pitted against fellow legend Bette Davis. Joan Crawford’s career spanned almost 45 years, according to the Legends of America website, but her personal life wasn’t quite as prolific as her professional one. Her daughter wrote a book entitled “Mommy Dearest” where she revealed the abuses and cruelty of the actress as a mother. The house where Crawford and her children lived in was called Crawford House and it’s said that her spirit, among several others, still roams its premises.
5. Abraham Lincoln at the White House
There’s no doubt that the White House is filled with spirits, due to its long and colorful history, from members of the first family to servants to staff to the former presidents themselves. The most popular spiritual dweller in the Washington, DC property is none other than former president Abraham Lincoln. Several presidents and first ladies have recounted instances of seeing “a tall, gaunt figure in several rooms of the residence,” as written in the Legends of America website. Lincoln’s ghost is most often seen at the Oval Office, where he’d stand by the window and gaze at the Potomac River during the Civil War.
4. Jean Harlow’s house in Westwood
Before Marilyn Monroe, there was Jean Harlow, who many in Hollywood have dubbed the original “blonde bombshell.” According to the Legends of America website, Harlow married MGM studio executive Paul Bern, but it was a tumultuous marriage, as Bern was rumored to have been physically abusive of his wife. He committed suicide in the bedroom of their home and five years later, Harlow passed away at the young age of 26 due to kidney failure. It’s said that both Harlow and Bern’s spirits still roam the mansion til this day.
3. Ozzie and Harriet’s House in Hollywood Hills
Back before reality TV became all the rage, there was a TV show in the 60s entitled The Adventures of Ozzy and Harriet, wherein the actors and their kids played themselves. The family’s Hollywood Hills home, which was used in the show’s exterior shots, is said to still be haunted by Ozzie’s ghost, according to the Legends of America site. Aside from lights flickering on and off and doors opening and closing on their own, the ghost’s actions were apparently frisky as well. One owner claimed that she actually felt the spirit kissing her neck and breasts while she slept!
2. Virginia Hill’s home in Beverly Hills
For those not in the know, Virginia Hill was an organized crime figure in the 1940s, according to Business Insider. Dubbed as a mob queen because of her ties to several gang leaders, she was the lover of notorious gangster Bugsy Siegel, who was gunned down by a mysterious assailant right inside the home. Nine shots fired through a window did him in and resulted in his instant death. Witnesses have claimed that Siegel’s spirit still wanders Hill’s home, some even claiming that he’s seen trying to duck, which was most likely one of his last movements before the bullets finally hit him.
1. George Reeves’ home in Beverly Hills
To this day, the truth behind actor George Reeves’ death is still shrouded in mystery. The original Superman died of a gunshot wound in the head, allegedly pulling the trigger himself, as reported by Business Insider. His death came just days before he was to marry socialite Leonore Lemmon. It’s said that the night he died, he was drunk and embroiled in a fight with his fiancé at his home in Beverly Hills. Friends who were also present that night claimed he then stormed upstairs and a gunshot was heard from his bedroom a few minutes later. Many believe that the story wasn’t accurate and that there was foul play involved. Needless to say, witnesses have reported strange occurrences in the house, such as lights flickering, things being moved around, plus the smell of gunpowder wafting through the air.