Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The B&B from "Nights in Rodanthe"

Did you see the Diane Lane-Richard Gere tearjerker Nights in Rodanthe, based on the Nicholas Sparks bestseller? On my other blog, I wrote a post about the house that was used for the Bed and Breakfast in the movie, and a reader who visited it this summer sent me this photo she took:

I was shocked to see how different it looks. This makes me wonder--were the blue shutters and the wraparound porches just special effects? What do you think?

Lisa, who sent me the photo, tells me that the house has been condemned because it is practically falling into the water now. People have been breaking into the house and stealing things because it was in the movie and they want a piece of it. How sad.

You can see more photos of the house in the post I wrote here, or check out a list of all of the movie houses I've featured on my Houses Onscreen page.

UPDATE 1/10: For the latest information about the house and the efforts to rescue it, visit Hooked on Houses.

52 comments:

  1. The house is great! Although being in the water would worry me. I wonder how far the house had been built from the water initially.

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  2. Hmmm... zooming in close, it doesn't appear to be digitally enhanced, but a Hollywood pro's work probably would be hard to detect. I haven't seen the flick... even if scenes appeared to be shot on the missing parts of the house, that could be "magic" too.

    An interesting aside: the house that was used as Shirley McClaine's home in Terms of Endearment belonged to a friend of my sister. The contract allowed for lots of physical alterations inside & out (including adding the roses)... as long as they restored everything to the original state, unless otherwise specified by the owner. I think they may have kept the gazebo.

    Why anyone would remove the porches & stairways on the Rodanthe house is curious, if indeed they were really there... perhaps a storm took them & repairs were made without replacing them? Very odd.

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  3. So sad to read about its current situation. It was such a lovely house on the film..

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  4. That's sad! I loved that house. But I bet the porch and shutters were just special effects. That's Hollywood for ya. You can't believe anything you see:)

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  5. that's so sad to see what people do. I guess some of it could have been digitally enhanced. Who would want a piece of railing? This is a movie I really wanted to see! I'll have to order it on netflix!Thanks for reminding me:)

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  6. What a lovely old home. It is so sad that people are treating it with such little respect these days.

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  7. I think the shutters and other things were all added for real.

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  8. SO sad!! I love the movie... for the location...not the end so much:(
    Great Post!! Have a fabulous day!!
    xxx me

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  9. That is just awful. It was beautiful. And a tour de force!

    On another subject: Sometimes I wonder if people read the text in posts...

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  10. A film I must see, the house in the movie looks amazing!

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  11. I haven't seen the movie, but I would assume it must have been digitally enhanced? How else would it be so different? As far as people stealing things because it's been in a movie, unfortunately it doesn't surprise me but it is sad. Why it's so important to them that they would steal it I'll never know!

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  12. Oh my...I did see this movie and looooved it! This is what's left of the house? Oh tell me it isn't so :-(

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  13. I did a bunch of research (while crying my eyes out) the night I watched the movie and the shutters and stairs were added for the movie and removed by the film company. They even added sand to the front and planted some shrubs and trees that were also removed.

    The house was only used for the exteriors. The inside of that house is not the same house they used in the movie.

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  14. It's so sad. I wish I could take care of it, like so many houses these days that are sitting abandoned. There's a beautiful Victorian a couple blocks from us that looks like it's been left without a family and it just breaks my heart for the house, but mostly the family.

    The comment above from Connie makes me think of the house used in Dying Young up here in Mendocino... It was the shell used but interiors filmed in the studio. Loved that house too, especially the huge kitchen with work table.

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  15. It's still a beautiful house! I hope they leave it for the sea to wash away...

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  16. The decks and stairs were actually there I believe... like someone else said before, the contracts usually state it be left alteration free once they've finished so I believe the decks, stairs and railings along with the shutters were all fake prop-type pieces and facades, like when they build sets in warehouses etc. and were all removed upon the completion of filming.

    If I had a bunch of money, I would buy the place and see if it couldn't be salvaged and make it a B&B like the movie... ahhh, silly pipe dreams. I'm currently in Jacksonville NC and I had thought the place was a real B&B and was dying to go stay there. This is really sad to see that it isn't even a home anymore.

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  17. Thanks to Connie for solving the mystery for me. That goes along with that I'm Julia and Tracie wrote about the contracts that say a house has to be returned to its original state after filming. I would've wanted those porches and shutters to stay on if it were mine! They added so much personality.

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  18. Actually, here is an interesting story about it from when it was chosen for the movie.
    http://hamptonroads.com/2008/09/weather-clouds-debut-outer-banks-cottage-nights-rodanthe#primary_tabs

    "The house was dolled up and temporarily renamed The Inn at Rodanthe; all the movie’s interior shots were done in Wilmington, N.C. Shutters were painted blue and decks and a gazebo were added. Sand was plowed from under the house and off the driveway."

    "The house, which was appraised in 2006 for $550,000, rents for $1,710 a week in the off-season and $3,785 in the summer."

    The article was from Sept. of 08

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  19. http://hamptonroads.com/2008/09/weather-clouds-
    debut-outer-banks-cottage-nights-
    rodanthe#primary_tabs

    Remove breaks when pasting into a browser

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  20. Thanks, Mysteh! Great article. I really appreciate that you found this for us!! -Julia

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  21. So...where is this beautiful, desecrated house
    located ?
    This is so sad. These houses are like lovely old people who have so many wonderful stories to tell - if only we would listen. They should be treated with dignity.

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  22. How sad that a beautiful old house has been condenmed, it has such wonderful potential but that is the price we pay when living too close to the sea.

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  23. I must go see that movie now, gosh how sad the house is nearly in the ocean, amazing!

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  24. This is really the most amazing thing I have ever seen.

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  25. Anonymous--
    Rodanthe is in North Carolina, the Outer Banks. Sorry--I should have said.-Julia

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  26. Not only is Serendipity condemned for a failed sewage system, but also the next 6-7 houses just down from it in a row. It's enevitible that it will be lost to nature. This is the most encroached upon area in the Outer Banks and is a great concern for the residents of Rodanthe today. It's an interesting situation for those inclined to research the exisiting problems the whole area is facing.

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  27. I'll put in my two cents...I too read that the movie studio added all those great decks and shutters to the house but I'm shocked after filming that they would take everything back...that makes no sense...but then again who would want to live in a house sitting in the ocean....I coudn't sleep at night for fear off a title wave.....

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  28. Great post Julia! I am sure people are probably taking the wood right off the walls just to have a piece of it! The house was so beautiful in the movie. Who knows what happened?

    ~Misti

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  29. Just watched the movie again last night after seeing it in the theater when it first opened. Both times I noted that most of the shots showed the stairs leading off the house towards the sea, but there is one scene where the stairs are not there! We even went back, paused the DVD and hubby agreed that scene did not have the stairs in them. Strange

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  30. Anon--That really is strange! I never noticed that. I'll have to pay attention next time.

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  31. I JUST SAW THE MOVIE THE OTHER NIGHT AND WAS BLOWN AWAY..AND BELIEVE ME....AFTER LIVING IN NC...WE HAVE LIVED THROUGH MANY HURRICANES...SO IT WAS A 'NICE' BLOWN AWAY. THE HOUSE WAS BEAUTIFUL AND SUCH A PART OF THE STORY...THE BRINGING TOGETHER OF THE CHARACTERS..I HAVEN'T SEEEN THE HOUSE AND IT IS A SHAME THAT PEOPLE SEEM TO WANT TO "TAKE" PEICES OF THINGS THAT ARE NOT THEIRS..WHEN THE MOVIE ACTIUALLY GIVES US WHAT WE NEED TO TAKE FROM THE MOVIE......AS FOR WHERE THE HOUSE PROBABLY WAS......THE LIGHTHOUSE HAD TO BE MOVED BACK SO FAR A FEW YEARS AGO DUE TO THE CHANGING TIDES AND IT HAD BEEN SO FAR BACK ORIGINALLY....I IMAGINE THE HOUSE HAD BEEN BUILT PRETTY FAR BACK, AS WELL.....WE HAVE HAD SO MANY STORMS AND THE BEACH EROSION HAS CREPT IN....SAND DOONES JUST DON'T HOLD UP..AND BOY IT CAN HIT SO FAST AND HARD......BUT THIS MOVIE WAS JUST WONDERFUL AND I WILL WATCH IT MANY, MANY TIMES AND CONTINUE TO LOVE IT AND CRY EVERY TIME!!! WITH JOY THAT IT WAS MADE IN NC....AND THE BOOK AND SCRIPT WERE EXCELLENT!! THANKS!! MARTY FROM WINSTON-SALEM

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  32. We were vacationing on the Outer Banks when part of the filming was happening, stayed in the hotel with some of the film crew. Sad to say that all the blue shutters, etc were added on by the production folks. Serendipity is a very sad place to see now. The area where the Jeep Cherokee is parked under the house is gone...washed away, as is the septic system and some other things. The ocean now runs all the way under and past the house during high tide. The house looks sort of forlorn and spooky now. It is condemned and everytime they repair it to rent....here comes another storm and tears it up again. I've been told the only reason it's still standing is the pilings are 25' in the ground. It's a heartbreaker, but I just don't see that house making it much longer. After every storm blows through, the first question is always..."did Serendipity make it?" So sad, so sad. But the house was built on a dangerous area of the island. The point it is located on is 25 miles out in the ocean, from the mainland.

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  33. As i sit here and watch the movie, again. I also am sad you cannot actually stay at this house. I was hoping for a really new, cool vacation idea. O well, great movie anyway.

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  34. Check out http://www.co.dare.nc.us/webcam/mirlo.php

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  35. Anon--thanks for the link! I hadn't seen that. Who knew there was a live feed showing the house? (Well, you did, obviously. Ha.) Looks like it's about to float away as we watch. So sad!

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  36. The web cam usually shows the road out front which was flooding yesterday and closed but today they aimed the camera at the house. Glad it was still aimed at it so you could see it!

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  37. Just returned from a family wedding on the beach by the house in Rodanthe
    the wedding was 09/09/09 6pm it was the only good weather day all week.
    The road was flooded each morning with the highway department moving the sand off the road.
    People stopping for photos of the house with great sadness all day long.

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  38. That is so sad. A reader just sent me the link to the real estate listing for the house. They're trying to sell it for about $500K--presumably before the water sweeps it away:

    http://www.coldwellbankerobx.com/property/property.asp?PRM_MLSNumber=58137&PRM_MlsName=OuterBanksNC&VAR_AgentCode=&VAR_OfficeCode=

    I was surprised by how little the interiors look like the ones in the movie! -Julia

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  39. Yes the house was digitally enhanced. I have been vacationing on Hatteras for more than 15 years now and the house has never had blue shutters or any shutters for that fact. It is the first house that you come to when entering Rodanthe and definitely gets its legs wet daily during high tide in teh fall. I once stayed a week in it back about 12 years ago and it also looks nothing like the house on the inside because they used a house I believ in Wilmington nc for the inside shots. Besides that it is the most beautifullest place to be on the east coast. I go down about 4 weeks a year.

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  40. Julia, remember the article I posted stated the interior shots in the movie were not filmed at Serendipity :) They were filmed in a house in Wilmington. Serendipity was only used for external shots. I can't believe it's actually up for sale now. I guess the owners are tired of trying to keep up with it now, eh? That is sad simply because in that article, the woman said that even though they couldn't keep the studio applied fixtures and only got 2 months rent for allowing it to be used, she thought it would be good for the house and area. Apparently she was wrong since people are breaking in and stealing "artifacts" from it now. I'd buy it... I have my NC PowerBall ticket for this weeks drawing! If i won that 170 mil, I would definitely buy the house, find a way to fix the septic situation and restore it to its "movie presence" and if it fell into the ocean tomorrow so be it. There is just something about the place

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  41. Hi just watched the film tonight and Googled to find some more info. I loved the house in the film, but I think the real thing actually looks better. It looks much darker and almost eerie in the movie and the dark blue shutters look like closed eyes - like the house is shutting you out. It reminds me of something out of the Unfortunate Events of Lemony Snicket. Whereas Serendipity has bright open-to-the-world windows that invite you in. I really hope somebody rescues it...

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  42. Hey check out the web cam 10/26/09 2:20 P.M.


    http://www.co.dare.nc.us/webcam/mirlo.php

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  43. Anon--looks like the house is about to wash away. Sad!

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  44. This article mentions that the Blue Shudders/Awnings and wrap around porches were just props and removed after filming.

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  45. We got a bad storm last we at OBX... the house is still standing https://apps.dot.state.nc.us/pio/releases/details.aspx?r=3068

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  46. Thought you might like to see this!

    http://ocracokeblog.com/

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  47. http://www.co.dare.nc.us/webcam/mirlo.php

    Just thought I would let you know they are moving the house and going to remodel its interior like the movie.

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  48. jacksonslade--
    Thanks! That's great news! -Julia

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  49. http://www.co.dare.nc.us/webcam/mirlo.php


    They are moving her!

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  50. jacksonslade--

    I've been glued to the webcam all day. I wrote an update about the house here if anyone wants all the details:

    http://hookedonhouses.net/2010/01/15/the-beach-house-from-nights-in-rodanthe-rescued/

    Thanks!

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  51. Check out some of my photos from the Nights in Rodanthe House (Original Location):

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/bryanelkus/tags/serendipity/

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  52. I've been a Nicholas sparks fan since I read one of his books in the mid 90's. And since then I've wanted to go to the outerbanks because the coastal towns of nc is where most of his stories take place. After I found out that nights in rodanthe was actually filmed in the outerbanks, I went there on vacation. The remodels done for the movie were indeed torn down after filming was done and the house was condemned. But it was still the most beautiful sight I had ever seen. I just stood in the surf and videotaped the waves rolling in under the house. The outerbanks are a dreamy place and I can't wait to go back!!

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I'm so glad you stopped by. Kick off your flip-flops and stay awhile! ~Julia :-)