Pictured is the Paradise Cove Pier at Bob Morris'
Paradise Cove Beach Cafe, Malibu. Once a haven for nude bathers, this
private Malibu beach was the set for a number of movies and television
shows, including "Gidget," "Beach Blanket Bingo" and "Malibu Run." Still
a favorite for filming, don't be surprised to find locations shoots going
on when you visit. The Cove's owner, Bob Morris, requires visitors pay
$25 to park at his beach, though the ticket is validated when you eat at
this restaurant. You can also park on Pacific Coast Highway and walk
down the mile-long driveway that leads to Paradise Cove. The parking fees
at Paradise Cove keep the masses away. Stand on the old pier that flanks
the south end of the beach and take in the idyllic ocean view. The spectacular
sunsets are priceless.
What comes to mind at mention of Malibu and Paradise Cove?
On the tip of your tongue should be such names as Barbra Streisand, "Friends"
star Courtney Cox and her hubby David Arquett who own a beachfront
retreat for a $10 million. Another cast member, Jennifer Aniston
and husband Brad Pitt are searching for a home in 90265. Frasier's
Kelsey Grammer lives here as does Martin Sheen of "West Wing".
And keeping Malibu in the limelight are the likes of a
Malibu Locations company owner Diane Klein. Here's a feature article from
Malibu Times about her business:
O.K., you've scrimped and saved and bought your dream
house in Malibu, but one day you wake up and realize the next $5,000 house
payment is going to be tough to meet. Solution? Rent
your house as a location set to the film and television industry.
Depending on a production company's budget, and the time
it'll need a home for, you could possibly make that mortgage payment for
the next three months at least. To get on that favored list that production
companies turn to in time of need, Malibu Locations Etc., Inc. is the place
to go. Operated for more than 13 years by Malibuite Diane Klein, Malibu
Locations has more than 1,000 of its 4,000 listings for shooting locations
right here in Malibu. Other locations listed in the company's directory
range from close to Agoura all the way down toward the Palisades.
Some homes are rented for as short a time as one hour,
others for weeks at a time. Rates vary from $1,000 on up to $35,000 a day.
If a homeowner lucks out, a house could be rented out for a series that
lasts years and years, and the production company will have to keep coming
back to shoot new footage year after year.
Klein, true to Hollywood tradition, fell into her corner
of show business by accident. "I was a housewife living in Malibu
when a location scout came to my door asking if we would like to rent our
home for a TV show called 'Stingray,' " she explains.
Klein agreed, and the rest is history. She started a business
to put Malibu's homes on the film market as locations and now has four
employees at work at her Point Dume office on Pacific Coast Highway, across
from Zuma Beach. "Not every home is suited for filming," says Klein,
"though we have a wide variety - from Wild West type log homes to ultra
Similar to film commissions in many states, Malibu Locations
offers a wide variety of look-alike settings so that Malibu can double
for New England, with Cape Code houses; Arizona, with rocks and sagebrush;
or even Italy or Greece, with hilltop marbled mansions overlooking the
The way the business works is simple: A location scout
working for a photographer, movie director or producer calls Malibu Locations
and describes what they are looking for. Klein then has her staffers pour
through their 4,000 locations to see if they have anything that fits. Photos
are then e-mailed or Fed-Exed to the potential clients and an offer made.
If the homeowner accepts, the contracts are signed.
Inevitably, the contract includes a provision to "return
the house back to its original state," which could include repainting,
carpet cleaning, etc. "Sometimes," says Klein, "the film company
needs a wall to be a different color. They can repaint it, doing a professional
job, and if the homeowner decides they like the new color, it is not repainted."
However, "rarely is that done," says Klein. "Though, we
frequently have the vegetation altered, with plants added or subtracted."
The owner does not have to worry about permits - the film company gets
those from the city. All the homeowner does is sign the contract with the
film company and the film company handles the paperwork. Liability insurance
is also obtained, with policies over a million dollars covering all potential
Since parking is a at a premium in Malibu, and movie companies
require trucks to haul cameras, tracks and cranes, off-site parking locations
are sometimes set up to transfer talent and workers to and from the actual
shooting location. Besides parking, another problem peculiar to Malibu
is bathrooms, or lack of them. Since a feature film crew could easily number
60 people and most homes in Malibu use septic tanks, the demand on bathrooms
could easily exceed capabilities, so porta-potties are brought in.
Klein knows the location-rental business from both ends
- her own two homes in Malibu are listed in her data base as well as the
home of her daughter and all are and frequently rented. One of them, her
home on Broad Beach Road, was used so much for the television show "Diagnosis
Murder" that the film company went to the trouble to build a duplicate
of the main room on the production lot set. Other TV shows that have used
Malibu locations found by Klein are: "Baywatch," "V.I.P." "Columbo" specials,
and a feature called, "Are You Talking to Me?" In most cases, she was able
to re-occupy her home the same evening as filming, the rentals being jobs
that could be shot in one day.
Paradise Cove Pier at Bob Morris' Paradise Cove
Beach Cafe, Malibu South of Kanan-Dume Road Paradise Cove Exit
from PCH 28128 West Pacific Coast Highway Malibu
(Paradise Cove), California 90265 R Call (310) 457-2503
Comments about Paradise Cove
My father was the original developer of Paradise Cove who
built the pier and cove, said Gee Gee Swanson Hayes.
When El Nino (1983 and 1985) took out 2/3 of Paradise Cove
pier, according to one source, the sport fishing boat, Gentleman, was forced
to retire from the cove. We miss the bait barge and the 87 sea lions that
made it their basking place. I. D. and Gayle Weiner
When a Chumash bowl was found last year during remodeling
of the restaurant at Paradise Cove and it could not immediately be determined
who should take possession, Sheriff's deputies arrested the bowl. So, the
Malibu City Council is authorizing the Native American Cultural Resources
Advisory Committee to revise the city's Cultural Resources Ordinance.
Tina Fisher Forde