There are days when the news reads like Mad Libs. Today is one of those days: HGTV outbid Lance Bass for the “Brady Bunch” house.
The Los Angeles property, whose exterior appeared in the show, returned to the market last month after almost 50 years.
“I am excited to share that HGTV is the winning bidder and will restore the ‘Brady Bunch’ home to its 1970s glory as only HGTV can,” Discovery chief executive David Zaslav announced in Tuesday’s second-quarter earnings call, according to Deadline. “More detail to come over the next few months but we’ll bring all the resources to bear to tell safe, fun stories about this beloved piece of American TV history.”
A tragic real estate tale precedes the cable network’s happy ending.
Bass tweeted on Friday that his offer on the Studio City property had been accepted the night before, using three exclamation points to express how excited he was. Maureen McCormick (of Marcia, Marcia, Marcia Brady fame) congratulated the former ’N Sync star on obtaining her pretend childhood home and wrote that she hoped any future problems would “always be solved in a half hour.” Another reply asked whether Bass planned to remodel the interior to match the show’s, to which he responded, “That’s the plan!”
And in a tweet that seemed totally normal at the time, renovating Property Brother Jonathan Scott wrote that he was “a little bummed” that Bass outbid him, as he “really wanted that house.” He then offered his design services to the future #IconicDreamHome owner and tagged HGTV.
Flash-forward to Sunday, when Bass wrote on Instagram that he was “feeling heartbroken.” He posted a photo of himself posing in front of the home with two others, with the words “Here’s a story … of a shady Brady” typed in bold print.
The story, according to Bass: An agent “representing the estate” told him that his bid – which was “WAY over” the asking price of $1.885 million – had won, and he celebrated with friends, family and fans. The next day, that same agent informed him that “another Corporate Buyer (Hollywood studio)” was prepared to buy the house at any cost.
“How is this fair or legal??” Bass asked. “How can I compete with a billion dollar corporate entity? I truly believe I was used to drive up the price of the home knowing very well that this corporation intended on making their offer and it’s not a good feeling. I feel used but most importantly I’m hurt and saddened by this highly questionable outcome.”
Tragic, we say!
For what it is worth, an agent who holds the property listing told the Los Angeles Times on Sunday that the sale was not a done deal at the time of Bass’s celebration and that, out of eight offers, “an ultimate prevailing bid was selected.” That bid came from HGTV, of course, though no one knew at the time.
Will the Property Brothers be the ones to remodel the property, referred to in its Zillow listing as the second “most photographed home in the United States after the White House”? Was Scott’s tweet a total coincidence? Will the future owners appreciate the Los Angeles River-bordering house’s “unique street-to-river orientation” as much as Bass would have?
It remains to be seen, as neither Bass nor HGTV’s representatives have returned requests for comment. We do know, at least, that Zaslav is a proper “Brady Bunch” fan. Deadline reported that later in the call, he jokingly threatened to send Discovery CFO Gunnar Wiedenfels to “Greg’s room in the attic” if Wiedenfels didn’t deliver on financial projections.
“That was not a fun place to be,” Zaslav continued. “It didn’t have a door. There were beads, if you remember.”
Local journalism is essential.
Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.
Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter
Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.