Ho-ho-holiday movie homes
Grab your eggnog and gather around the television! It’s that time of year for caroling, cold weather and, of course, holiday movies. Whether you prefer slap-stick comedy or a heartfelt flick, we’ve rounded up some of the most-loved holiday films and their filming locations.
‘A Christmas Story’
The leg lamp, the snowsuit and the Red Ryder air rifle — there’s no denying the appeal of “A Christmas Story.” Today, Ralphie’s house, located in Cleveland, is a dedicated museum. “Christmas Story” fan Brian Jones bought the house off eBay and completely restored it to its original Hollywood glory.
Despite the number of bad-guy-capturing booby traps in the movie “Home Alone,” this suburban Chicago house is hardly worse for the wear. The entire residence served as the setting for the film starring Macaulay Culkin, who was accidentally left alone during a family Christmas trip. More than 20 years after the film’s debut, the Winnetka home hit the market, and judging from the listing photos, the place looked as if it had hardly changed from the movie. The home sold for $1.585 million in March 2012.
Cameron Diaz swapped her luxe LA home for Kate Winslet’s quaint England cottage in the romantic movie “The Holiday.” While Diaz spent her vacation in the small home, Winslet enjoyed the modern amenities and expansive floor plan of the California home. Located in San Marino, about 15 minutes outside LA city limits, the private home used for “The Holiday” is 10,324 square feet with 9 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms and an in-ground pool.
‘Miracle on 34th St’
Kris Kringle proves he is Santa Claus at the end of the classic “Miracle on 34th Street” when Doris Walker and her daughter, Susan, happen upon the exact home Susan wanted for Christmas. The white clapboard home, located in Port Washington, NY, has hardly changed from its film debut in 1947. Built in 1943, the home has 1,703 square feet and plenty of charm.
‘The Family Stone’
As many know, the holidays can be stressful for one reason: family. “The Family Stone” captures this holiday challenge in a classic Connecticut home. Built in 1860, the rambling farmhouse held the five grown children and their significant others as they returned for the holidays.
When Buddy the Elf travels from the North Pole in search of his father, he ends up in the Big Apple. His father lives in an apartment in Central Park West — an iconic art deco building with a desirable location just steps from Central Park. “Elf” wasn’t the building’s first feature film; the co-op was also a filming location for “Ghostbusters.”
It wouldn’t be a holiday movie roundup without mentioning “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.” However both were filmed on sets in Los Angeles.
‘It’s a Wonderful Life’
The rundown mansion in Bedford Falls that Mary and George Bailey purchased was created just for the film. Set on RKO’s Ranch in Encino, the entire town of Bedford Falls was built for the film. The fictional town doesn’t exist today; the ranch was sold to developers.
One home from the movie that does exist is the Martini family home. The exterior of the home is shown briefly when the Baileys welcome the Martinis to their new house, located at 4587 Viro Rd, La Canada Flintridge, presenting them with bread, salt and wine.
‘National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation’
Decked out with 25,000 bulbs, the Griswold family home figures largely in the 1989 film “Christmas Vacation.” Both sides of the family gather for what turns out to be a disastrous holiday with rogue squirrels, unexpected guests and a kidnapping. The ranch-style home is located on the Warner Bros. Studios back lot in a neighborhood that was also used for “Bewitched” and “Lethal Weapon.”
Get breaking and town-specific news sent to your phone. Sign up for text alerts from the Daily Chronicle.