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Meet the house that inspired Oscar winning Disney Pixar’s ‘Up’

We’re pretty sure you’ve all seen (and more than likely sobbed your way through) Disney Pixar’s hit 2009 family movie, ‘Up’.

But we bet you didn’t know it was reportedly inspired by a real life house, situated in the heart of Washington’s Seattle?!

Meet the house that inspired Oscar winning Disney Pixar’s ‘Up’ – and now Edith Macefield’s Seattle home is heading to the big screen; Fox Searchlight is producing a film surrounding elderly Macefield and her astonishing gumption; she stood firm in her decision to refuse developers permission to buy her home, reportedly turning down offers of $1m (£640,000) for the property worth $120,000.

As a result, the remarkable house stood firm as a shopping centre was built – quite literally – around it (see picture below). It served as a visual representation of firm opposition to the gentrification of the once rough area.

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The untitled script comes from John Whittington, currently working on Netflix series based on the Dr Seuss story Green Eggs and Ham, and the film will be produced by credited producer Will Gluck (director of musical remake Annie and hit teen comedy starring Emma Stone, Easy A). A director is yet to be found, but judging by the already stellar behind-the-scenes team, we can expect yet another big name.

The film will be a comedy-drama, based on a true story focussing on the unlikely friendship that blossomed between Macefield and the building project’s care taker, Barry Martin  – who went on to inherit her house when she died (2008) and left it to him in her will.  You can’t make this stuff up!

Although Pixar denies the house was an inspiration for ‘Up’ in any way – claiming they started work on the film 2 years before Macefield was approached about selling – the similarities are uncanny. Based on an elderly man who went to great lengths to stop developers destroying his house, there is no denying fictional ‘Up’ bears serious resemblance to Macefield’s true story.

As for the house, it still stands in Seattle and has done so for over 115 years. Now owned by a non-profit organisation, the house has been covered in balloons by fans of the Pixar film. There has been much interest from potential buyers – including one mother with plans to open a pie shop entitled ‘Edith’s Pie’s – however the property has been pronounced unsafe and therefore denied a selling permit.

“It has become apparent that the age and condition of the house make it cost prohibitive for anyone to use the house in its current location,” Paul Thomas (the broker behind the home’s sale) said in a statement.

“The house will either be donated or demolished, then the land will be sold.”

Looks like we’ll all have to make do with it’s memory – in the form of a much loved Disney Movie…


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