Director Cuts His Ties to Ojai


Producer-director TIM BURTON, who is scheduled to direct the upcoming movie “Superman,” starring Nicolas Cage, has sold his Ojai retreat for $1.7 million, sources say.

“Superman” was due to start filming this month but was put on hold pending script and budget revisions. Burton also plans to produce the movie “Goosebumps,” based on R.L. Stine’s series of children’s books.

Burton’s first book, “The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories,” was recently published. He wrote the book in rhyme and illustrated it.

“The Nightmare Before Christmas” (1993), a stop-motion animated movie that he produced, was based on ideas he had while working as an animator at Disney.


Among the movies he has produced and directed are “Mars Attacks!” (1996) and “Edward Scissorhands” (1990). Earlier, he directed “Batman” and “Beetlejuice.”

Burton, 39, grew up in Burbank. He has an office at Warner Bros. in Hollywood and rents a building in Hollywood that he uses as his studio. The building has been, at various times, a home and an office for him, sources said, but he has another L.A.-area home now and an apartment in New York.

His Ojai house was, however, his favorite retreat, sources say. Built in 1928, the Spanish-style home has five bedrooms and six baths in 6,300 square feet. It is on 5.8 acres, behind gates, with mountain and valley views. The hacienda also has a waterfall and a pool.

Burton had owned the home since 1992. He sold it, to a businessman, because he has been too busy with other pursuits to enjoy it, sources said. The asking price was $2.5 million.


Mickey Elliott and Bunnie Hickman of Dilbeck Matchett Properties/Sothebys International Realty in Westlake Village had the listing.

Rock star TOM PETTY has purchased an eight-bedroom home on three acres in Malibu for about $3.7 million, sources say. The asking price was just under $4 million.

The singer-songwriter appeared earlier this month in a comical bit with Clint Black and Greg Kinnear in Garry Shandling’s final “Larry Sanders Show,” and he played himself in the movie “The Postman” (1997).

Petty, 45, won a lifetime achievement award this year from BAM magazine. Petty founded his band, the Heartbreakers, in 1975, and they went on to become one of America’s top rock acts.


Petty performed songs for the 1996 movies “She’s the One,” “Jerry Maguire” and “Jingle All the Way.”

He bought a Mediterranean-style 10,000-square-foot home behind gates with ocean and canyon views. Built in the ‘40s, the house was refurbished recently. There is a four-bedroom, seven-bath main house as well as a two-bedroom guest house and separate staff apartments. The property also has a motor court--large enough to park 15 cars--and a five-car garage.

Emmy-winning actress BARBARA BABCOCK, who played pioneer newswoman Dorothy Jennings on the series “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman,” has listed her Greene and Greene home in Pasadena at $825,000.

Babcock, who won a best actress Emmy as Grace Gardner on “Hill Street Blues,” plans to rent in California and buy in Ireland. She has owned the Pasadena home, which was built in 1906, since 1987.


The Greene brothers were known for their Craftsman and California Bungalow architecture, characterized by heavy timbers, low gabled roofs, porches and overhanging eaves.

The two-bedroom 2,400-square-foot house has art-glass fixtures, two fireplaces and built-ins such as window seats.

It also has a Japanese garden. Babcock, about 60, learned Japanese before she spoke English. She grew up in Tokyo and Europe as the daughter of a U.S. Army general. She likes to go on anthropological expeditions in Africa and South America.

Boyd S. Smith and Maggie W. Navarro of Coldwell Banker in Pasadena have the listing.


Entrepreneur ISAAC TIGRETT, who founded the West Hollywood-based House of Blues in 1992, has sold his home in Mulholland Estates for about $3.2 million. The asking price had been $3.5 million.

Tigrett, in his late 40s, stepped down as CEO of the House of Blues nightclub-restaurant chain last fall. He is a chairman emeritus but is not involved in the company on a daily basis. He is also a former owner of the Hard Rock Cafe.

Tigrett had owned his house since 1996, when he paid a bit more than $2.8 million for it. The 7,500-square-foot house has six bedrooms and 6 1/2 baths, and it is on slightly more than an acre with a tennis court. The home was built in 1994.

Academy Award-winning director GEORGE SIDNEY and his wife, Corinne Entratter Sidney, have listed their Beverly Hills home at $3.8 million.


It is the first time that the house has been put on the market since it was built in 1935 and bought soon after by actor Edward G. Robinson, who starred in 101 movies, including “Little Caesar,” the 1930 gangster hit.

Robinson lived in the house until he died in 1973. His widow married George Sidney in 1975. She died in 1991.

Sidney continued to live in the house after remarrying about seven years ago, but the couple recently moved to Las Vegas, where he plans to remake his “Viva Las Vegas” (1964).

Sidney, 82, was president of the Directors Guild for 16 years and this year received the DGA’s first Presidents Award. He also directed “Anchors Aweigh” (1945), “Show Boat” (1951), “Kiss Me Kate” (1953) and “Bye Bye Birdie” (1962).


The Beverly Hills house was originally 7,800 square feet but was later expanded by 4,000 square feet. Robinson also built a soundproof 3,000-square-foot gallery with a 20-foot-high glass ceiling to house his famous art collection.

The Georgian-style home has a wine cellar, greenhouse, guest house, motor court and four master suites.

Mark Rosenberg of Nourmand & Associates, Beverly Hills, has the listing.

Billionaire financier KIRK KERKORIAN has listed the bulk of his 31-acre Beverly Hills-area estate at $13 million.


The 29 acres that he is selling includes an 8,000-square-foot house once owned by Sylvester Stallone. Kerkorian split the property in 1990 when Stallone bought the house on about 11 acres for $5.7 million. Stallone sold it back to the financier in 1997 for about $5.2 million, sources say.

The site, which also has a tennis court and putting green, is listed by Jade Mills of Coldwell Banker-Jon Douglas Co., Beverly Hills, other sources said.