How Accurate Are Hollywood Star Maps?
The Hollywood Reporter analyzed three separate maps and found numerous instances in which different addresses were assigned to the same star — and those weren't even correct.
Curious to know where Beyoncé and Jay-Z live? According to one modern star map, their address is 10231 Charing Cross Road H.H. But wait. Another map has them residing 27 miles away, at 27422 Pacific Coast Highway. How about Johnny Depp? His house is at 7760 Woodrow Wilson Drive. Scratch that. Another map has him residing over on 1495 Sweetzer. And none of that matches reports that Depp sold his main L.A. residences in the Eastern Columbia building in downtown L.A.
Much of the charm of star maps, which can be purchased from a kiosk, a vending machine or a person on the side of the road for $5 to $25, is their kitschy, old-school feel. They are relics of an analog era. But that charm comes at a cost — mainly, accuracy.
THR surveyed three maps, one bought from a bodega in Hollywood, one from a vending machine and the third from Linda Welton's stand in Holmby Hills. Across the three maps, THR analyzed the addresses for 93 stars. More than half — 51, to be exact — have different addresses assigned to the same boldface name. For someone interested in say, Rob Lowe, one map sends you to Nichols Canyon (not even close). Another map has him living on "Dome Drive," which Google says is in Fontana (even colder). The map should read Dume Drive in Malibu.
In some cases the maps list addresses that don't even exist. Welton says she updates her maps four times a year, and hers seem the most accurate. But she was unaware of the recent sale of Ben Affleck's home in Pacific Palisades.
Celebrity real estate sleuthing has come a long way since star maps were invented. In the old days, you had to rely on an insider to leak you the information or bang on doors. Nowadays "real-estalking" is a tedious endeavor. Modern-day A-listers go to great lengths to hide their addresses behind LLCs. Finding them requires intimate knowledge of Google Street View, public databases, online listing services like the MLS and costly subscriptions to LexisNexis. If all that fails, well, you can always gamble on a star map.
This story first appeared in the Feb. 20 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.