Director Marc Forster Selling Renovated and Restored Neutra Home for $15M

Jeff Spicer/FilmMagic; Marc Angeles, The Agency

Director Marc Forster—the man behind such Hollywood hits as “Finding Neverland” and “Quantum of Solace”—also loves architectural hits.

Forster meticulously restored and renovated the Richard Neutra–designed Sten-Frenke residence in Santa Monica, Ca. He’s now put the finished product on the market for $15 million.

Neutra built the Santa Monica Canyon home in 1934 for Ukrainian actress Anna Sten and her husband, filmmaker Eugene Frenke, who wanted a custom estate to entertain the Hollywood elite.

Neutra designed a three-bedroom house illuminated by ribbons of natural light from the numerous skylights, glass doors, and windows. He set it on the back portion of a double lot, ensuring the home had ocean views as well as privacy.

Neutra’s design won the House Beautiful competition, becoming the first modern home to win that particular contest. It has since been designated a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument, No. 647.

Ocean views

Marc Angeles, The Agency


Marc Angeles, The Agency

The property was restored twice relatively recently, the first time by the architectural firm Marmol Radziner, which updated the infrastructure and augmented the aesthetic beauty.

Forster, who purchased the home in 2009 for $4.7 million, spent an estimated $4 million on improvements. He hired designer Mark Haddawy and general contractor Dave Binder, who reviewed UCLA’s Neutra archives to determine the best materials to restore the home to its full original glory.

In addition to installing geothermal generators, the team added a studio/guesthouse with a hot yoga room and sauna. The new structure is long and oval, like the main house.


Marc Angeles, The Agency

The main house features a large living room with a brick fireplace and wraparound windows, an oval-shaped dining room, and a master suite with a private balcony and office.

Living room with brick fireplace

Marc Angeles, The Agency

Oval-shaped dining room

Marc Angeles, The Agency

Master suite


Marc Angeles, The Agency

The home has been featured in numerous magazines and in the 2002 movie “Laurel Canyon.”

Forster, 50, had his breakout in 2001 with “Monster’s Ball,” for which Halle Berry won an Academy Award. Among his other prominent films are “The Kite Runner” and “World War Z.”

Billy Rose of The Agency has the listing.

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