Location Scout

Zoo -- The Film

Every once in a while I’m contacted by location scouts searching for places to film around the Seattle area. They’ve usually seen something on Unusual Life or some artists home on Seattle Dream Homes and they need a house or vacant lot, other times they’re looking for entire streets.

I wrote about being contacted last year by a film crew looking for an idyllic farm to shoot that lovely tale of man/beast love, Zoo. They found a farm, a horse, a couple of actors, and the film was in the can in a couple of months. It premiered at Sundance and just opened up in Seattle last week to, uh…. rave reviews. You know, the classic love story of a man and his horse.

The Riches

Some L.A. friends Tim and Jill, were approached a few months ago by a location scout for the F/X show “The Riches”, a show created by Eddie Izzard and starring himself and Minnie Driver.

I’m not sure I would have watched it if it hadn’t have been filmed at my friends house, but now that I’ve started, it’s compelling. The plot surrounds a family of “travelers”, roaming gypsy-type criminals who through a twist of fate, end up in a dead families upscale suburban home. They take on their personas, jobs, clothing and education, and it’s an interesting glimpse into both lifestyles. It’s like hijacking the American Dream, in a nightmare suburb somewhere in the Southern United States.

Tim & Jill’s house belongs to the “next-door neighbor” sort of an eccentric artist-type of gal, and it’s featured in several shots.

Jill and Tim\'s Riches

Click HERE to view more interior photos.

Tonight is the last episode of this season, but it’s become so popular, F/X announced that it’s been picked up for a second season.

Should you rent your house out to a filming company? If you do, make sure you have an attorney to hammer out the details in case of inadvertant damage. You’ll want to make sure your home is restored to as good or better condition.

In my friends case, they’re replacing all the carpets and re-doing the flooring after the wrap. And that’s on top of the daily filming fee, so it’s not a bad trade-off for them.

Go for Filming – site to list your home suitable for location shooting

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  1. Jay Thompson

    “Should you rent your house out to a filming company?”

    If Minnie Driver is going to be walking around my house looking like that, I don’t really see much issue with letting the film crew in….

    In all seriousness, great article! Nice looking home, I can see why they wanted to film there.

  2. B.R.

    I really enjoyed the first and second show, but I found myself getting nervous they were going to get busted. Who wants to watch people you like dodge the law all the time!

    I also wondered what the homeowner thought in the first episode when Minnie had to break the glass on the front door to get back in the house- I think I’d have had a panic attack…

    I’m with Jay, if Minnies going to be hanging out in my living room, I could see my way to letting one or two of the crew come in- maybe…

  3. david losh

    I’m so glad some one included the Riches in a Real Estate blog. It’s my favorite program.
    It’s a program for all of us who think of ourselves as frauds from time to time. When we look around at what we have, or accomplished, and just know some one’s going to tell us it isn’t real. What I enjoy is that they are finding out that every one has a little secret here and there.
    As for the Real Estate portion of the program the Riches work for an unscrupulous Real Estate developer. I’m sure by the end they will find thier employer has swindled more people, more times, for more money, than they could ever imagine.
    It’s a great commentary on a life we take for granted every day.

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  5. Brenna

    Interesting read. Your friend’s home is lovely.

    Small error– “The Riches” was not created by Izzard, but by Dmitry Lipkin, who is head writer as well.

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  7. Sean Harrington

    We often have new homeowners listing their properties for filming. Lately, with the housing market salowdown it makes good sense to promote your home or business as a film location because of the added tax free income renting provides.

    Most locations earn $5,000 to $7,000 per day. If anyone has a question or wants to register their home for filming, feel free to contact us. Madison Locations, Inc. (626) 399-6809

    Great article about filming locations!

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  9. Steven Gerard

    One thing to remember about listing your house with a location agency. It is 100% illegal to operate such an agency unless licensed by the Dept. of Real Estate, and you subject yourself to a huge risk by doing business with them. I recently did a report, and was amazed to find out how many of these ‘agencies’ operate without a real estate broker’s license. It turns out there are only 5 (five) legitimate agencies in the Los Angeles area. Always ask for the broker’s name and license number; otherwise, it’s just not worth it. I got my information by visiting the real estate dept.’s website at http://www2.dre.ca.gov/PublicASP/pplinfo.asp