Jason Bateman gives Ernest Borgnine’s estate a new identity

Actor Jason Bateman and his wife, actress Amanda Anka, are dropping anchor in the Beverly Crest area with the purchase of the estate of Ernest Borgnine for $3 million.

The gated country English compound sits on a half-acre knoll. The 6,148-square-foot home features a formal entry hall, a grand staircase, a paneled library, an office, a den, six bedrooms and seven bathrooms. There is a guesthouse and a swimming pool.

Bateman, 44, stars in the comic film “Identity Thief,” released this month. He is known to generations of TV viewers for his roles in “Arrested Development” (2003-present) and “Valerie,” later retitled “The Hogan Family” (1986-91). Anka, 44, has appeared in “Bones” (2008), “Notes From the Underbelly” (2007) and “Beverly Hills, 90210" (1996).

Borgnine, who died last year at 95, is remembered for his Oscar-winning performance in “Marty” (1955) and his work in the title role as commander of a madcap crew in the sitcom “McHale’s Navy” (1962-65). Until 2011 he was the voice of Mermaidman on “SpongeBob SquarePants.”


The estate came on the market in October for the first time in 60 years priced at $3.395 million.

Billy Rose, Paul Lester and Aileen Comora of the Agency in Beverly Hills were the listing agents. Richard Ehrlich of Westside Estate Agency represented the buyers.

Where pair spent days of their lives

Soap star Peter Reckell and his wife, singer Kelly Moneymaker, have sold their custom-built, eco-friendly home in Brentwood for $3.35 million.

Before building the 3,345-square-foot house, the couple had the existing home on the site torn down, crated and shipped to Mexico for reuse by Habitat for Humanity. Then they designed and built a three-bedroom, four-bathroom contemporary that uses solar power.

Green elements include a photovoltaic system with battery backup, skylights, recycled glass terrazzo floors with radiant heating, recycled denim and organic cotton insulation, bamboo cabinets and doors, a roof garden and a water reclamation system.

A temperature-controlled wine cave and a recording studio are among other features.

Along with an indoor/outdoor koi pond, a meditation fountain and a solar infinity pool, outdoor amenities include a 16th century East Indian temple that was turned into a pavilion.

“This is my sanctuary,” Reckell said. It frames views of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy.

Reckell, 57, played Bo Brady on “Days of Our Lives” from 1983 through last year. The show began in 1965. He also appeared in “Knots Landing” (1988-89). He is an avid environmentalist and bikes to work.

Moneymaker, 42, is a former member of the music group Exposé. She was inspired to build an environmentally friendly home because the carpet and other elements in the old house bothered her allergies and affected her voice.

Public records show they bought the property in 2003 for $1.14 million.

Daniel Banchik of Prudential’s West Hollywood office was the listing agent. Scott Segall of John Aaroe Group represented the buyer.

Another rock owner for home

Hard Rock Cafe co-founder Peter Morton has made his mark on L.A.'s real estate scene of late, buying the old Elvis Presley estate in Beverly Hills at year-end for $9.8 million.

But flying under the radar was his bigger off-market purchase midyear for a property in Bel-Air at $25 million, public records show. Area real estate agents not involved in the transaction say Morton plans to take down the existing home and build another on the site. The estate had belonged to Joseph Farrell, who founded National Research Group Inc. in 1978 and brought market testing to Hollywood. Farrell died in December 2011.

The gated Beverly Hills compound that Morton bought — once home to the iconic rock ‘n’ roll singer and his wife, Priscilla — encompasses 1.18 acres. The French Regency-style house, built in 1958, features four bedrooms, five bathrooms, 5,367 square feet of living space and an attached guesthouse. There is a swimming pool, a four-car carport and a motor court and spa.

The property had been listed in October at $12.995 million with Jade Mills of Coldwell Banker, Beverly Hills.

Cartoonist exiting from the frame

Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Berkeley Breathed has listed his mountainside retreat in Santa Barbara for $4.95 million.

The 25-acre ocean-view estate, which includes a single-level custom home, a swimming pool, fruit trees and a guesthouse, was designed as a creative environment. Avocado ranches sit on both sides of the property.

Features include solar power, an art studio and a screening room where Breathed worked for the last 12 years on Hollywood projects including “Mars Needs Moms” (2011) and “Secondhand Lions” (2003). There are five bedrooms, five bathrooms and 5,241 square feet of living space.

He is selling the contemporary Mediterranean to be closer to his children’s school.

“I’d gotten quite used to working high above the Santa Barbara clouds in a Xanadu-like studio that appears designed for Captain Nemo,” Breathed said. “Their particular school forced a painful decision to come back to downtown Earth.”

Breathed, 55, won the Pulitzer for editorial cartooning in 1987 for “Bloom County.” Among the author, novelist and screenwriter’s other comic strips were “Outland” and “Opus.” His most recent film project is his novel “Flawed Dogs,” presently in development at DreamWorks Studios.

Chris Palme of Coldwell Banker is the listing agent.

His latest Biscuit lofts production

Actor-director-producer Vincent Gallo is in escrow to sell a downtown Los Angeles loft priced at $1.295 million.

The 2,610-square-foot loft in the former National Biscuit Co. building features three levels, two patio/garden spaces, an exposed brick wall, two bedrooms and three bathrooms. Building amenities include a 24-hour doorman, a saline swimming pool, a gym and gated parking.

Gallo starred in such independent films as “The Legend of Kaspar Hauser” (2012), “Essential Killing” (2010) and “Tetro” (2009).

Public records show he bought the property last year for $825,000.

The avant-garde Gallo has bought and sold multiple units in the 1925 building, where he serves on the association board, including a penthouse that last year went for $2.6 million.

Frank Bruno of Keller Williams Realty in the Hollywood Hills is the listing agent.