This house has good bones — and more than a few skeletons in its closets.
The Pennsylvania home featured in 1991’s Oscar-winning The Silence of the Lambs is on the market. And if you’re angling for a piece of notorious cinematic history — the film’s serial killer Buffalo Bill terrorized Jodie Foster’s FBI agent in it — now could be your chance: The couple who own it have just dropped the asking price from $300,000 to $250,000.
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Turns out, not everyone wants to live in the house where Foster had the living daylights scared out of her.
According to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the house has been on the market since last summer. But finding a buyer has proven nearly as elusive as capturing Buffalo Bill in the film (yes, even with the help of Anthony Hopkins’ Hannibal Lecter).
Located in the remote village of Layton, about 35 miles south of Pittsburgh, the three-story Victorian, which is owned by Scott and Barbara Lloyd, fired up intense curiosity when it first went on the market, becoming the second-most-viewed home on Realtor.com. But that’s apparently about as far as potential buyers — or cinephile gawkers — were willing to go.
“We know there are people interested, but it comes down to who wants a home like that?” the Lloyds’ realtor, Dianne Wilk of RE/MAX, told the paper.
“We got the message out to the curious, but not to the people who are interested in actually buying,” homeowner Scott Lloyd explained. “We’re finally starting to get a little bit of motion.”
The production crew reportedly shot for three days in the house, which, contrary to what fans might think, doesn’t actually include the labyrinthine basement-dungeon that figured prominently in the film’s white-knuckle finale. (Those scenes were shot on a soundstage.)
It does, however, feature a quaint foyer where its homeowners were married a year after buying the house in 1976, according to the Associated Press – the same foyer where Foster’s character, Clarice Starling, first meets Buffalo Bill.
The film swept the Academy Awards in 1992, nabbing all five major awards — Best Picture, Best Director (for Jonathan Demme), Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Adapted Screenplay — and becoming the first horror film in history to win Best Picture.
Macabre pedigree aside, the house does have a couple of things going against it: It’s fairly isolated, in Pittsburgh’s hinterlands, and it’s got only one bathroom despite having four bedrooms and a finished attic.
“The fact that a home gets a ton of publicity doesn’t necessarily add up to a quick sale,” Erik Gunther, a Realtor.com senior editor who specializes in unique homes, told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “Just because I want to gawk at something doesn’t mean I want to buy it.”
In other words, good luck holding out hope for a killer offer anytime soon.