12:54pm PT by Michael O'Connell
HGTV Will Likely Give 'Brady Bunch' House Away After Show Airs
Here's a story. You know the Brady Bunch house in Studio City that HGTV bought in 2018? The network is probably going to give it away to a fan once it has filmed and aired all of A Very Brady Renovation later this year.
It's not a wild shocker for the Discovery-owned network, which annually gives away remodeled homes to its design-enthusiast audience, but this would come with quite a big investment. The company spent $3.5 million in a competitive situation for the piece of 1970s Americana, outbidding NSYNC alum Lance Bass, and is investing quite a bit more to make the interior of the home look as close as possible to the show's iconic Stage 5 set at Paramount.
"We're rebuilding the house," Discovery lifestyles chief Kathleen Finch said Wednesday during a panel at the NATPE conference in Miami Beach. "The inside looked nothing like it did on TV, so we are making the inside look like the set. It's insane."
The transformation and its results — which also reunites original castmembers and "Brady kids" Barry Williams (Greg), Maureen McCormick (Marcia), Christopher Knight (Peter), Eve Plumb (Jan), Mike Lookinland (Bobby) and Susan Olsen (Cindy) — will premiere later in 2019. The show will also include appearances from other familiar faces not part of the HGTV family. Added Finch, "You'd be amazed at how many people are Brady Bunch fans."
When it's all over, the exec says the house will likely be given away — and, at the very least, fans of the show will have the chance to "earn" a stay. She maintained the company hadn't formalized plans for what to do with the property when it was finished using it for TV.
Offering some backstory to the initiative, Finch said the network wasn't immediately transparent about its intentions.
"We went undercover and toured the house," she says. "Turns out we get into a bidding war with Lance Bass. It turned into a TMZ event. It spiraled out of control."
To seal the deal, Finch says the network reps had to come clean: "We went to the family, said who were and said we'd be really respectful of it."
As for Bass, Finch noted that there were no hard feelings and he was still a "friend" of the network — so a cameo doesn't seem out of the question.