Monday, January 19, 2009

1967 Universal Studios - The Psycho House

Lately, it seems that one post leads me to an idea for my next post. In my last post, I ended with a photo of "Bates Motel" matchbooks that were sold in the early '90s at Universal Studios. This reminded me that somewhere among my family's slides, I had a couple shots of the Psycho house on the Universal backlot. The photos above and below were taken by my dad in 1967, only 3 years after Universal began their backlot tram tour.

Here is a close-up of the Psycho house from the photo above.

The Psycho house exterior originally only consisted of two walls....the left wall and the front of the house. After the filming of Psycho (1960), the house was used in many other movies, television shows and commercials. In 1964, a third wall on the right side of the house was added for the filming of the western film, "Invitation to a Gunfighter." In this film, the house was the home of one of the film's characters (Sam Brewster.) The house did not get a fourth/rear wall added until 1982 when the filming of Psycho II began. At this time, the house was also moved to a new location, where it currently remains today. Prior to 1982, the house sat on the edge of the backlot's "western town" and above what was then called Singapore lake (now used as the Amity set for the "Jaws" portion of the tram tour).
In addition to the matchbooks mentioned earlier (and pictured here), Universal sold other "Psycho" related merchandise in the '90s. The "Do Not Disturb" sign below was one such item. There were also white bathroom towels with "Bates Motel" embroidered on them which I did not purchase, but now I wish I had!


SiloDweller said...

Hey there,
this is a really great post! I'm always looking for photos of the "Psycho" house set and these are just great.
Thanks for putting them out there!

TokyoMagic! said...

Thank you, SiloDweller! I'm glad you liked the photos!