Chris Pratt blasted for secretly demolishing historic LA home to build 'McMansion'

Martha Ross, The Mercury News on

Published in Entertainment News

Chris Pratt has long had his online detractors who’ve dubbed him Hollywood’s “worst Chris.” Now, the “Guardians of the Galaxy” star has angered a new segment of American society — architecture fans and preservationists.

News outlets recently learned that Pratt and his wife, Katherine Schwarzenegger, quietly bought a 20th century modern “treasure,” the 74-year-old Zimmerman House in Brentwood, then “surreptitiously” demolished it last year with little warning, the Robb Report said. The iconic one-story home, built in 1950, was one of the earliest works of famed Southern California architect Craig Elmwood, and it was long regarded as one of the outstanding examples of Mid-Century Modern design in Los Angeles, Dwell magazine and other outlets also reported.

Pratt and his self-help author wife paid $12.5 million for the property and “wasted little time in demolishing it,” the Robb Report said. The couple have chosen to replace the Zimmerman House with a 15,000-square-foot structure home built in what Dwell said is the “increasingly ubiquitous, though contentious” farmhouse style.

Other architecture fans and preservation activists were not so diplomatic in criticizing Pratt and Schwarzenegger for replacing the smaller historic home with a farmhouse “monstrosity.”

“Yet another reason why he is the worst Chris,” someone said in reply to an Instagram Story post by Save Iconic Architecture, a nonprofit advocacy organization.

Over the past several years, Pratt has emerged as a polarizing figure in popular culture and the target of occasional flareups on social media. People take issue with his suspected conservative politics and have gone after the “Super Mario Bros’ Movie” star for attending a purportedly anti-LGBTQ church, for having a sheriff’s deputy brother who promoted hard-right imagery and for seeming to disregard the son he had with first wife Anna Faris in favor of the two daughters he has with second wife Schwarzenegger.


Now, the actor with the outward, regular-guy charm is the target of a whole new group of people who don’t like him.

“Special place in hell for people who do this, go buy a readily made McMansion instead you dumb (expletive),” someone wrote on X, while sharing a link to an Architectural Digest story about the demolition. Dwell reported that Pratt and Schwarzenegger also tore up all of modernist legend Garrett Eckbo’s original landscaping, “effectively turning the nearly one-acre lot into one flat slab.”

Members of the Midcentury Modern subreddit likewise expressed their horror and anger at the couple’s actions, Dwell reported. People posted such comments as “Yet more proof that money can’t buy good taste,” and “I know its (sic) just material but sincerely, burn in the deepest pits of hell bro.”

“This wasn’t some grandma’s ranch house in a random, sprawling suburb in Pennsylvania, with a no-name architect and zero significance!” one person said on the subreddit. The house had “architectural, historical, and artistic relevance,” the person said. “This was a grand dame of these homes.”


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