British pop star PHIL COLLINS, who plans to tour this summer with the English art-rock band Genesis and will play Dodger Stadium on June 18, has purchased a Beverly Hills home for just under $8.5 million.
Collins started out as a drummer/singer with Genesis but became a superstar in 1985 when he earned an Oscar nomination and a Grammy for his 1984 hit "Against All Odds," which he wrote for the movie of the same name.
He later won several other Grammy awards and released a number of best-selling albums and Top Ten singles.
Collins, who is 41 and recently estimated his wealth at $50 million, has a 14-acre home in England near Guildford, in the county of Surrey. He decided to buy what is believed to be his first home in the United States when he saw the Beverly Hills home, originally priced at $14.5 million.
Escrow closed last week on the Tudor-style, nearly 14,000-square-foot home, which has three master-bedroom suites in three separate wings of the main house, two maids' quarters, two guest houses and a dining room that can seat more than 60 people.
The nearly four-acre grounds, virtually unchanged since the 1930s, are park like with many trees, a tennis court and a swimming pool.
Built in 1926, the home was designed for director/producer Albert Christie and his brother Charlie Christie, whose studio produced comedies that sometimes rivaled those of Mack Sennett. The Christie brothers moved into the mansion with their wives and lived there until 1933.
Early film star Richard Barthelmess later owned the place, followed by composer/lyricist Cole Porter and then shoe magnate Harry Karl. Record producer Phil Spector held several large parties in the home in the late 1960s.
Collins will live in the home with his wife of eight years, the former Jill Tavelman, an American who grew up in California.
The Beverly Hills home, owned since 1988 by a Japanese company that never used it, had been listed by Barbara Duskin and John Aaroe of Douglas Properties; Collins was represented by Ryan Hilckmann of Jon Douglas Co.'s Beverly Hills office. None could be reached for comment.
High-tech superstar PETER NORTON, known as "the software saint" by computer users who have learned to depend on his programs, has paid $8 million for a house in what is believed to be the biggest single-family home sale in the history of Santa Monica.
Norton, who turns 48 this year, founded a software publishing house in Santa Monica in 1983 and created the million-selling Norton Utilities, a program that enables computer files that are seemingly killed to be retrieved.
Before Norton decided to buy the Santa Monica house, film director Oliver Stone considered purchasing it, sources say. The original asking price was said to be $12.5 million.
The home has five bedrooms and a guest house in 13,000 square feet and was owned by developer Steven Lebowitz and his wife, Deborah. The home sits on 1.5 acres overlooking the Riviera Country Club and has a tennis court and a swimming pool.
An Italian Renaissance-style home built in 1931 by the late artist/muralist TONY HEINSBERGEN, who designed the interiors of more than 700 movie theaters during Hollywood's Golden Days, has come on the market at $5.95 million.
Heinsbergen owned the house, in Pacific Palisades, for many years before actor Joseph Cotten, now 86, bought the home in 1956 and lived there for quite a while. The sellers, an international art dealer/artist and his wife, purchased the place in 1973 and are selling it to move to Chicago.
The 9,000-square-foot, ocean-view house has four bedrooms, a housekeeper's floor, a guest house, a three-car garage now used as an artist's studio, and an indoor pool. There is a vaulted ceiling painted by Heinsbergen in the living room. Bruce Nelson of John Bruce Nelson & Associates has the listing.