Barring a last-minute helium-powered rescue, Seattle's resilient little "Up" house — so named for its resemblance in style and spirit to the 2009 Pixar movie — faces demolition or removal.
The investment management company that owns the tiny structure told the New York Times on Monday that it will have to be torn down or carted off after potential buyers backed out of purchasing it and bringing it up to code. The clock is ticking: A white knight would have to emerge in the next 90 days for the house to avoid being razed.
The holdout house was made famous several years ago when its octogenarian owner, Edith Macefield, refused to sell it to make room for a big-box retail complex, which then was forced to awkwardly build around the 600-square-foot abode.
Pixar fans were quick to note the similarity between Macefield's home and its counterpart in "Up," Pete Docter's animated movie about a cantankerous old widower (Ed Asner) who steadfastly holds on to his residence in the face of a developer's wrecking ball, motivated by the many memories of his wife in the house. Eventually, he takes the building on an airborne adventure with the help of a giant bunch of balloons.
Like Asner's character, Macefield became something of an unlikely hero before she died in 2008, inspiring a music festival, a cocktail and more than one tattoo around town.
Though Macefield's old house has been boarded up for some time, that hasn't stopped "Up" devotees from making pilgrimages to the site and tying colorful balloons to the chain link fence encircling it. Sadly, it's yet to achieve liftoff.