Ann Dvorak’s Los Angeles, Pt 13 – 6948 Woodman Ave, Van Nuys

Year of Ann Dvorak: Day 271


Shortly after returning from their eight-month European honeymoon in March of 1933, Ann Dvorak and Leslie Fenton decided to get away from it all by renting a walnut farm in Van Nuys. The house was located at 6948 Woodman Avenue in the Van Nuys neighborhood and included a great deal of acreage. The move to the San Fernando Valley wasn’t that unusual and for a while was a trend among members of the film community. Many movie folk called the SFV home over the years, including Clark Gable, Carole Lombard, Al Jolson, Ruby Keeler, Paul Muni, Edward Everett Horton, and Bob Hope, just to name a few.


After renting on Woodman for just a short period of time, the Fentons decided to build their dream home over in Encino and resided in Van Nuys for less than a year. Despite the short stay, they were heavily photographed inside and outside the house, though the only good shot I have of the exterior is the one above  from a movie magazine. Also, when the farm was put on the market in 1936, the seller seemed to have been trying to capitalize on their one-time residents.

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The house is actually still standing and was converted into a pre-school a number of years ago. Yes, I thought about using my daughter as a decoy to go in and take a look around, but it just felt wrong.


  1. Mike September 28, 2013

    An Ann’s biographer, your “daughter decoy” plan certainly forgivable. You shoulda done it!

    I continue to enjoy the blogs & count down the days till the book arrives in the mail.

  2. admin September 28, 2013

    Maybe if the house were more Ann-significant I would, but it still feels wrong!

  3. Julie August 16, 2014

    Daughter of the pre-school owner here. We wouldn’t mind you dropping by! My parents have renovated the place up a bit – something I regret because we never appreciated the beautiful interior back then, but some of it remains (especially on the 2nd floor). I was hoping to find info on the history of our property (growing up I was always told that a movie star once resided here). Thank you for your blog!

  4. admin August 16, 2014

    Hi Julie, I would LOVE to come and visit! I’ll be sending an email shortly. Thanks for commenting!

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